by Bill Cook
As we sat in the restaurant with our two young daughters, the mother in the booth across from us told her child, “Hey, see that booth over there, across the way? Go over there and get me that ashtray.” The child was old enough to read and know better, so she answered back, “But Mom, this is the non-smoking section.” The mother slapped her daughter on the back of her head and said, “Don’t talk back to me. Go and get that ashtray!”
A Lesson in Values
In that brief exchange, two sets of children learned something about the values that lady possessed: her children and our daughters. Our children didn’t even wait to get home. They began talking about what happened as soon as we were outside and headed for the car.
One important theme in the book of Proverbs is stated in 29:18 (King James Version): “Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.”
It shows up in our Scripture for today in verse 22: “Without counsel, plans go awry, but in the multitude of counselors they are established” (NKJV).
When People Perish
When we fail to teach solid Christian values (like reading the Proverb of the day), when we fail to cast a biblical vision for our lives (such as living according to the Ten Commandments, the Beatitudes, and the law of love), then people perish.
What should we expect when we heed Solomon’s advice (something he had a hard time doing himself)? We discover joy, delight, and life.
All in favor, teach the values. All in favor, cast the biblical vision. All in favor, read a Proverb a day. Amen?
Bill Cook is senior minister with the First Church of Christ in Covington, Indiana where he and his wife Pam have served since July of 2007.