Proverbs 13 continues with contrasting righteous attributes and foolish attributes. However there are a couple of verses that don’t necessarily fit this model and I’d like to look at them. BTW, if you are taking the running analogy to heart, you should be in the zone now. Plan to stay in the zone for a while.
Observations and Highlights
Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life (v12).
Hope deferred. To hope is to look forward to with desire and reasonable confidence; to believe desire or trust. To defer means to put off to a future time. Hope deferred is to have an expectation that is delayed; an expectation that doesn't occur in an anticipated timeframe, as a result, becoming less hopeful, stressed, or anxious. This delay pains the mind and affects the spirit. However, we have to know that what we’re hoping for is from the Lord. It does no good to hope you win the lottery if the Lord has not directed you in that way; that may just be wishful thinking.
Why be any of those things when you can give it over and just wait. Waiting seems SO HARD but hold on to the fact that a longing fulfilled brings life. God understands what we go through when we hope, that's why He gives us someone to place our hope in.
He that walks with wise men shall be wise, but a companion of fools shall be destroyed (v 20).
Choose your friends wisely as they can negatively or positively influence you. Sometimes, it's much easier for friends to have a negative influence on you than the other way around which is why we are also warned that bad company corrupts good character. The pull your companions may have on you is similar to a gravitational pull. The more wise friends you have the greater the likelihood that you will be positively impacted by them. The converse is also true. As with everything, it’s a process but once you recognize that you may be a companion of fools, sever the chains and go in a different direction.
Whoever spares the rod hates their children, but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them (v 24).
If you’re a parent, you MUST discipline your children as it is one of the best ways to demonstrate love. In my family, we were beaten (sounds horrid), but we weren’t abused. That correction served its purpose because it kept us on the straight and narrow. As a child, I didn't necessarily appreciate this correction, and as an adult and a parent, I now know it could not have been easy for my parents. But the discipline occurred because the alternative was not pleasing: bad behaviour left unchecked. Find a happy medium that works for you, but correct your child lovingly when necessary. The more you do it in their formative years – the less you’ll have to do it as they're older.