Untangling Yourself From Costly Mistakes

Today’s reading: Proverbs 6:1-5, Jeremiah 42-44

Today’s focal verse: Proverbs 6:3 follow my advice and save yourself,
    for you have placed yourself at your friend’s mercy.
Now swallow your pride;
    go and beg to have your name erased (NLT).

This week’s memory verse:

Proverbs 6:16-17 There are six things the LORD hates–no, seven things He detests: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that kill the innocent. (To keep this verse manageable, I cut it off at 17. If you want to memorize all six things God hates, you can find it here: Proverbs 6:16-19)

debtIn a moment of haste, you said yes to something you later realized wasn’t in God’s will for you. So what do you do? Integrity tells us to honor our commitments, but it also tells us to obey God without hesitation, to follow His will above all else.

My child, if you have put up security for a friend’s debt
or agreed to guarantee the debt of a stranger—
if you have trapped yourself by your agreement
and are caught by what you said—
follow my advice and save yourself,
for you have placed yourself at your friend’s mercy.
Now swallow your pride;
go and beg to have your name erased.
Don’t put it off; do it now!
Don’t rest until you do.
Save yourself like a gazelle escaping from a hunter,
like a bird fleeing from a net

(Proverbs 6:1-4).

Although this passage is talking specifically about co-signing, I wonder if the principal might be true in other situations. I’d love to hear from you. When should we honor the commitments we’ve made, even if we’ve realized later they were made in error, and when should we “save ourselves” “like a gazelle escaping from a hunter.”?

I find today’s reading quite interesting in light of a few of our previous devotions. When I consider mistakes I’ve made, they normally boil down to two causes: either I didn’t pause to seek God’s will, or, I didn’t give God enough time to respond. Meaning, there have been many times when I’ve prayed about something, but, when God didn’t answer according to my time schedule, have made a decision or commitment anyway.

Obviously, it is far better to seek God’s will before giving our commitment, but we’re not perfect and will, on occasion, get ourselves into difficult situations.

Pause to think about decisions you’ve made in the past, specifically those that you made in haste. Did God ever ask you to rectify a situation, and if so, how did you do this, and what were the results?

Notice, this passage is talking specifically about co-signing. Do any other verses or biblical truths come to mind when you read this?

How does God feel about debt? If you’re unsure, read Deuteronomy 15:6 & 28:12, Proverbs 22:7, Romans 13:8

How does God feel about co-signing? (Prov. 22:26-27)

How might knowing and living God’s Word help avoid situations like those alluded to in today’s reading?

Do any past memory verses or reading passages come to mind? (I’m thinking of Proverbs 2:7-8. 🙂 )

Let’s talk about this! You can join the conversation in the comments below, or, you can join our Yahoo Proverbs Study group by clicking the link below:

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