For people who think the Bible is completely irrelevant, you are wrong!
I randomly flipped to Proverbs 25 the other day and it was gold. I found so many golden nuggets of truth that are as applicable in today's modern world as it was thousands of years ago.
King Solomon, the author of the Proverbs, uses lots of imagery and metaphors in his writings, so I will be interpreting the practical meanings behind each. Put these in practice, and you will be wiser and more successful than ever before!
1. "Do not exalt yourself in the king's presence, and do not claim a place among his great men; it is better for him to say to you, 'Come up here,' than for him to humiliate you before his nobles." (Proverbs 25:6-7)
Have you ever tried to show off in front of people, only to be put down because someone proved that you weren't all that you made yourself out to be? Not only is that humiliating, but you lose the respect of everyone that witnessed that. So, Solomon is saying that you'll be way better off if you don't talk all big in front of people, especially your bosses/superiors. Let your life and worth ethic speak for itself. Allowing others to praise you instead of praising yourself is far more rewarding, and your humility will help you gain the respect of everyone around you.
2. "Through patience a ruler can be persuaded, and a gentle tongue can break a bone." (Proverbs 25: 15)
Do you really want something? Do you want to learn how to more effectively get your way? Well Solomon is saying that whining, arguing, and screaming about it sure won't get you there! Instead, if you really want to convince another party of something, do it kindly and gently. Lower your voice, speak calmly and be in control. You may be surprised at how much more positively the other party will respond to your argument/requests when they see that you're not making a big whole fuss about it.
3. "If you find honey, eat just enough - too much of it, and you will vomit." (Proverbs 25:16)
...Basically, don't binge on your favorite foods because you'll eventually get so sick of it you actually get sick! Or, in other words: When you don't over-indulge in something, you'll enjoy it way more. Isn't that true? Take food, for example. When you savor something, you'll realize you enjoy it far more! Or if you haven't seen a good friend in a long time, you thoroughly enjoy their company more when you finally do hang out! Self-control is the best policy.
4. "Seldom set foot into your neighbor's house - too much of you, and they will hate you." (Proverbs 25:17)
Don't go over to your friends' houses so much unless you're invited! Sometimes, we think that our friends want us over all the time! And I'm sure your friends love your company, but you won't want to over-stay your welcome. Going over too much may result in conflicts or annoyances that your friends may be too awkward to bring up with you. So, save your friendship the trouble and be mindful about how often you are going over! It's better to be invited over and welcomed heartily by your friends than to invite yourself over and not be welcomed.
5. "If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat; if he is thirst, give him water to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head, and the LORD will reward you." (Proverbs 25:21-22)
It's far easier to slap the person who's been mean to you and to rant on Twitter about your enemies. Revenge always makes us feel like the stronger person. But here, Solomon is saying that if you don't want to look as pathetic as your enemies, be kind to them. Be the bigger person and be nice to them when it's the appropriate time. It'll silence your enemies and put them to shame. They'll not only respect you, but they'll feel really pathetic for being so small-minded and mean to you. Who knows, this may even get them thinking and help them to change. Even if being kind is hard at first, you'll come out feeling stronger and happier about yourself.
6. "Like a city whose walls are broken through is a person who lacks self-control." (Proverbs 25:28)
A city with broken walls suffers all kinds of troubles because enemies can easily enter. A city with broken walls won't have the protection it needs to sustain itself and eventually, it'll fall into the wrong hands. This is the same as a person who doesn't practice self-control or set good boundaries for themselves. For example, a person who over indulges in alcohol because they fail to practice self-control will eventually open themselves up to drunkenness, a whole slew of health issues and alcoholism which can result in a lot of pain that can break up relationships and families. The joy that comes in over-indulging will be overshadowed by the great pain and regret that follows a lifestyle of no self-control.
7. "Better to live on a corner of the roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife." (Proverbs 28:24)
Being a naggy person not only makes you an annoying person, but all your nagging will never get people to change. No one likes to be around a person who is always critical and wants to strike up an argument all the time. Are you that person? Do you realize that you are driving people away with your words, even people who are the closest to you? If so, quit being quarrelsome. It doesn't help, it only hurts.
8. "Like one who takes away a garment on a cold day, or like vinegar poured on a wound, is one who sings songs to a heavy heart." (Proverbs 25:20)
This one makes me laugh, because we all love playing sad, sentimental music whenever we're feeling down or brokenhearted. I don't know why we do because it just makes us feel more emotional and more dismal about ourselves! Solomon is telling us to stop with the sad music when we're sad! All it does is bring unnecessary pain. Instead, listen to things that uplift your spirit and bring health to your soul.
9. "What you have seen with your eyes do not bring hastily to court, for what will you do in the end if your neighbor puts you to shame?" (Proverbs 25:8)
Solomon is saying: Don't quickly jump to conclusions and accuse people of things if you haven't thought through, and don't point the finger if you don't have the proper proof for it. If the other party proves you wrong, you'll look stupid and have a lot more to lose than they. Instead, don't ever make rash decisions. Think things through completely. Don't be quick to judge, or you just might be the one to face judgment.
10. "Like apples of gold in settings of silver is a ruling rightly given. Like an earring of gold or an ornament of fine gold is the rebuke of a wise judge to a listening ear." (Proverbs 25:11-12)
Have you ever been rebuked or scolded about something that was exactly what you needed to hear, even though it hurt your pride/ego at the time? Though those words stung at first, you probably look back now and see the value in those truths. If you're smart, you probably really appreciate the wise person who cared enough about you to correct you. Solomon is encouraging you to be smart and heed wise words. Don't be too proud to hear out the wisdom that people share with you, because their words just as valuable, if not more, than real gold.
Proverbs 25 isn't the only book loaded with golden truths. Read the whole book to find more practical advice that will change your life!