“… let your heart keep my commands…” Proverbs 3:1
“Never let loyalty and faithfulness leave you. Tie them around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart.” Proverbs 3:3
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart…” Proverbs 3:5
“My son, pay attention to my words; listen closely to my sayings. Don’t lose sight of them; keep them within your heart.” Proverbs 4:20-21
“Guard your heart above all else, for it is the source of life.” Proverbs 4:23
And then we come to Chapter Five. Go read it: Proverbs 5, then come back and join me as we look at this together.
What might seem a difficult passage that is written just for men, let me explain why I think this is for all of us. Because God prefaced this chapter with words that remind us how important it is to have a heart that is committed to Him, I believe that this chapter is very practical in its application directly related to marriage. I also believe that it speaks to us on a spiritual level and our commitment to Him. It all comes back to the condition of our heart. So stay with me here.
The chapter is all about Solomon warning his son about avoiding “the forbidden woman”. Women, this applies to us as well. Staying faithful in marriage is crucial. And He wants us to enjoy it! (verse 19 says, “be lost in her love forever”) I like the sound of that, don’t you?
I’ve seen many examples, and I bet you have too, of marriages gone awry. It’s not a pretty picture. The pain of divorce and the price of infidelity is shown very differently on the movie screen than it is in real life. It’s painful. It carries consequences. And only in real life do you see the way it affects every aspect of your life and family.
Solomon’s warning to his son was a wake up call for me. I have a healthy marriage, having just celebrated 37 years of marriage to my high-school sweetheart. We are more in love now than ever. We enjoy each other’s company and hate to be apart.
Do we have a perfect marriage? Of course not. We struggle and we fuss sometimes, but our commitment to each other is stronger than ever–so that means we work it out–always. We don’t let ourselves go to bed upset with each other. We communicate and discuss and pray together, reassuring one another that our marriage is built on the strong foundation of faith in a God who can heal our wounds and bind us together in a way that nothing else can.
So the question is, how does this relate to me? To you? What could God be saying to me in this passage?
The term adultery defines an act of infidelity in marriage. The Bible very clearly calls us the bride of Christ, and as a believer I am reminded that anything that seduces me away from God’s truth can lead down a very dangerous path–away from God’s best for my life. Let me be clear–I believe that nothing can separate me from the love of Christ [Romans 8], but just as in a marriage I must guard my heart from anything that pulls me away, I have to protect myself from anything that damages my fellowship with Him.
Often we don’t see it as a case of infidelity–chasing other gods or just turning our back on the One True God, but in reality there are always going to be things that Satan will use to try to damage our relationship with God. He knows he can’t have us if we’re a child of God, but he sure likes to tempt us to walk away from those things that are true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, and commendable. (Philippians 4). God’s best collides with what the world wants to offer you. There are times in life that we must give up even things that seem good for what is best.
Don’t let Satan rob you of God’s best for your life. Let go of those things that seem to be pulling you away from Him. If God seems distant to you, take a step back and examine what “time fillers” are stealing you away from time with Him. Evaluate your prayer life. If you’re not on speaking terms with God, there is probably something that is separating you–and the Bible calls it sin. Maybe your sin is a sin of omission–instead of something you are doing wrong, it could be you’re neglecting to do something that is right. Something you know you are supposed to be obedient in, and you ignored it or just walked away.
Remember when I said I think I have a healthy marriage? One of the main reasons I believe it to be true is because we communicate. We share the good and the bad. We try to listen when the other person just needs to talk. It is a given that we will always be there for each other–and that our devotion belongs to no one else.
That’s what God wants for us in our marriage and in our relationship with Him–a heart connection. It’s not just knowing facts about God, but knowing–and believing that He loves me. That He knows me. And that He wants a relationship with me.
Do you want to know how that happens? Like marriage is a commitment, Christianity is about a commitment we make, by grace through faith (Ephesians 2:8). If you would like to know more, go to my FAITH page, here: FAITH
I promise all of my posts on Proverbs won’t be this long, but please stick with me! I’d love to hear feedback on this one…
Do you see the analogy of faith and marriage? What has God shown you through this study so far?
Wisdom is a worthy pursuit, so I hope this journey is helpful for you. I am praying that readers will grow in knowledge, but more than that, I hope that together we will see God more clearly and love Him more completely!