The Upper Room Devotion for Thursday, July 20, 2023, was written by Tun Thwin from Quebec, Canada.
1 The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel: 2 For learning about wisdom and instruction, for understanding words of insight,
3 for gaining instruction in wise dealing, righteousness, justice, and equity; 4 to teach shrewdness to the simple, knowledge and prudence to the young — 5 Let the wise also hear and gain in learning, and the discerning acquire skill, 6 to understand a proverb and a figure, the words of the wise and their riddles. 7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.
Proverbs 1:1-7 NRSV
When I was in the eighth grade at school, I took scripture lessons on a weekly basis. The lessons were about stories from the Holy Bible. My scripture teacher asked us to learn by heart the names and order of the books of the Bible and then asked us to recite them in class. Taking these scripture lessons during my preteen period was helpful in my character formation. The lessons strengthened me spiritually and helped me become a more disciplined person.
Now, as an adult, I read the Bible in the early morning during my daily devotional time. When I search for a scripture reading, the memory of the names and order of the books makes it easy for me to find the specific chapter and its verses. When I search for a reading I remember my thoughtful teacher whose lessons prepared me for the struggles I would face in my life. I am grateful for this grace-filled preparation, which set me out on my journey of faith.
Who was the person that taught you your most valuable life lessons, was it your father, mother, or maybe your grandparents? They have taught us the importance of character and integrity. They have taught us the value of doing our best in any endeavor. Likewise, the lessons we learn about Jesus from Sunday School, Vacation Bible School, Bible Studies, and by the examples of other Christians impacts and influence the direction of our lives. We learn the importance of compassion, kindness, selflessness, servanthood, consistency, and stewardship, just to name a few. I invite you to pause and remember those who have taught you, through their words and actions, the importance of having a relationship with Jesus.
Gracious God, thank you for the people who have prepared us for a life of faith. In Jesus' name we pray, "Our Father in haven, hollowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one" (Matt. 6:9-13, NIV). Amen. - Tun Thwin