Proverbs 11 is a pan scale comparison. Verse by verse, the good is contrasted with the bad. Verse one introduces the concept but calls for accurate assessment. “The LORD abhors dishonest scales, but accurate weights are his delight.” Then the scales tip preferring humility over pride, integrity to duplicity, and the list goes on. A few times the scale tips a balance of an equal comparison, “Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout is a beautiful woman who shows no discretion,” and my favorite, “The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life…” The chapter rings the register closed with, “If the righteous receive their due on earth, how much more the ungodly and the sinner!” I know the loving discipline of God comes to me in correction and reward even now. What can I learn today from my current affliction? He led me to the life of recovery by nudging me into the realization that I was a compulsive overeater. What might he be trying to spare me now?

I have a multi-faceted spiritual conflict with participating in a Martial Arts discipline. I thought I had dealt with this to my satisfaction, but it continues to gnaw at me. I suspect God may be answering my questions about that. One of my conflicts comes with the practice of bowing to the photograph of the founder of the art at the beginning of each lesson. I had dismissed this conflict on the grounds that I was bowing out of gratitude and respect, not worship. Today’s reading contained an interesting point on topic, “If a man … is found doing evil in the eyes of the LORD your God … bowing down to (other gods) or to the sun or the moon or the stars of the sky… stone that person to death.” (Deuteronomy 17:2-5 excerpted for emphasis)

Honestly, I penned the first paragraph (above) before reading the text referenced in the following one. Did someone order the humble pie? Order up!

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