The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel:
for gaining wisdom and instruction;
for understanding words of insight;
for receiving instruction in prudent behavior,
doing what is right and just and fair;
for giving prudence to those who are simple,
knowledge and discretion to the young—
let the wise listen and add to their learning,
and let the discerning get guidance—
for understanding proverbs and parables,
the sayings and riddles of the wise.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge,
but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
One do over in my life would be a much more serious reading and application of the book of Proverbs. Add to that all of Scripture. I seem to take a special liking to wisdom literature in Scripture, I don’t think because I actually like it above the rest, but more like that seems to be the bent of my thinking and how I approach life, or how and what I attempt to share now.
One big possibly common mistake for young zealous Christians is to think that reading or listening to Scripture again and again is good enough. That is quite good no doubt, but not enough. The truth and wisdom found in it needs to become more and more a part of who we are.
Proverbs is the straightforward wisdom book of maxims to encourage us that if we become and practice such and such, there will be good results. I think we can rest assured on that. I don’t think every promise is like turning in a coupon at a grocery store. Maxims don’t work that way. For example, not every child we train up in the way they should go, will necessarily follow through (Proverbs 22:6). Certainly God has his wayward children. There are too many variables. And admittedly no parents perfectly fulfill their calling. But by and large the maxims are true. And there’s no doubt that wisdom carries its own reward.
It’s never too late to try to do better. But it takes time, patience, and practice. We will and do fail. But we need to especially heed the warnings, and steer clear of the dangers, taking seriously the counsel of God’s word. And seek to become what we aren’t now in accord with where Scripture points us. In and through Jesus.