Your 50 Favorite Proverbs

Your 50 Favorite Proverbs: Write Them on Your Heart

January 2014 Your 50 Favorite Proverbs with Liz Curtis Higgs

So, what is a proverb? Wisdom captured in a sentence. Truth that holds its ground through the ages. A familiar statement expressing a common belief.

Yet the Bible’s book of Proverbs carries far more weight than mere human wisdom. It’s the Lord’s truth, poured through the hearts of men and women, from the sayings of “Solomon son of David” (Proverbs 1:1) to the “inspired utterances” of King Lemuel’s mother (Proverbs 31:1).

Proverbs teach us not just how to think, but also how to do “what is right and just and fair” (Proverbs 1:3). They’re designed to make us behave differently. They’re meant to be life changing, and they are.

In the year ahead, do you long to be more like the Lord you love? More purposeful, more peace filled, more grace giving, more generous? Then join us on our journey through Proverbs. God has much to teach us, and I can’t wait to learn with you!

A Bible Open to Proverbs

There are 915 verses in the 31 chapters of Proverbs. At the end of today’s short study, I’ll ask you to share just one of your favorite verses. We already explored Proverbs 3:5-6 last summer, so that leaves 913 other verses for you to pick from!

First we’ll study one of the Proverbs I love, just to get the ball rolling. Then next week, we’ll begin looking at your favorites, starting with # 50. Maybe you’d like to memorize them with me? We can handle one verse a week, right? More on that in a moment.

Here we go, my friends, leaping into God’s Word with joy and abandon!

Let love and faithfulness never leave you;
    bind them around your neck,
    write them on the tablet of your heart. Proverbs 3:3

Write Them on Your Heart

Let love and faithfulness never leave you;… Proverbs 3:3

From God’s point of view, love and faithfulness are inseparable. One can’t exist without the other.

  • Because God loves us, he remains ever faithful.
  • Because God is faith itself, his love is never ending.

Whether translated as “loyalty and kindness” (NLT) or “grace and truth” (CJB), this powerful pairing comes from the Hebrew words hesed, meaning “favor, mercy, loving-kindness,” and emeth, meaning “firmness, faithfulness, truth.”

Such phrases are drenched in goodness, sweet as honey, deeply satisfying—the very opposite of “hatred and selfishness,” of “hypocrisy or falsehood” (AMP).

Sadly, that’s the world we live in. We harbor negative feelings toward others. We insist on doing things our way and for our benefit. We call people two-faced, even as we cover our own duplicity with a smile.

Some days even the best of us can act like the worst of us.

Discouraged Young Woman

This proverb shows us the way out: “Don’t lose your grip on Love and Loyalty” (MSG) and “do not lose sight of mercy and truth” (VOICE). How do we do that? Tighten our grip on God and focus our eyes on him.

  • Seek the Lord before you turn to an earthly friend, however wise.
  • Read his Word before you open another book, however edifying.

God knows we can’t drum up these righteous qualities on our own. That’s why his love and faithfulness are woven into our very being by the power of the Holy Spirit. The love is all his, the loyalty is all his, yet it’s firmly planted in us. Amazing.

He urges us not to leave his grace and truth unexercised, but to put them into action. As Matthew Henry wrote, “live upon them, and take the comfort of them.”

  • Want to fully experience the love of God? Love others.
  • Want to understand how God can be faithful to you? Be faithful to others.

Lord, why do we always complicate what you make clear?

Scripture Necklace on Etsy

…bind them around your neck,… Proverbs 3:3

This phrase is so visual, so tactile. Imagine slipping God’s sacred words onto a silver chain so you can “wear them like a necklace” (NCV), displaying his loyalty and kindness for all to see.

If God means for us to literally “tie them” (ERV) around our neck, “as a reminder” (NLT), this Scripture jewelry, and other pieces like it, provide a way to do just that.

Yet there are deeper truths to be found in this proverb. One of the most accurate places to measure a heartbeat is the carotid artery in the neck. Perhaps the Lord intends for us to check our spiritual pulse. To press in and ask hard questions.

Does my heart truly beat for the Lord? Is his Word active in me? Or am I dead to Christ and alive to the world?

Wooden Rings

The truth is, we hold closest to our hearts what we value most.

When I was twelve, my first crush gave me his wooden ring (all the rage back in the day), and I gave him mine. His ring was too big for my finger, so I wore it on a leather cord around my neck. All the time. Even if it clashed with my outfit, I wouldn’t dream of neglecting his gift to me.

That ring told the world I was chosen.
That ring assured me I was cherished.

And that leather cord around my neck? Gently rubbing against my skin? A constant reminder of the one I cared about.

God deserves to be remembered. Every day, every hour, every minute.

Love & Faithfulness on Tablets

…write them on the tablet of your heart. Proverbs 3:3

We have all sorts of tablets now, from spiral-bound ones to sleek digital models with myriad apps.

But such tablets are easily broken, stolen, or lost forever.

So, God asks us to store his wisdom in a more permanent place, “deep within” (NLT), on the “tables of thy heart” (DRA). The same Hebrew word describes “the tablets of stone inscribed by the finger of God” (Exodus 31:18), which the Lord covered with his commandments and entrusted to Moses.

The tablets God writes on now are anything but stone. He wants his truths etched “in your mind” (CEV) so you can “meditate on them” (VOICE). That’s why memorizing Scripture is so valuable.

I’m grateful to have God’s Word on my mobile, my Kindle, my laptop, my bookshelf, but where it makes the most difference is in my heart.

Each time I write or speak, this is my prayer: “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer” (Psalm 19:14).

When his words of love are in my mind, they are more likely to pour out of my mouth. That’s why I’m practicing this week’s verse aloud, committing it to memory. Join me?

Let love and faithfulness never leave you;
    bind them around your neck,
    write them on the tablet of your heart. Proverbs 3:3

My daughter and I created a pretty Printable for Proverbs 3:3, with four copies of our memory verse on a single page. Cut them apart to tack on your bulletin board, post on your fridge, slip in your purse, prop on your desk—anything to keep God’s Word front and center this week.

Printable for Proverbs 3:3

Now it’s your turn

  • Chose one verse you love from the book of Proverbs.
  • Share it below under “Post a Comment.”
  • Include the whole verse, if possible.
  • Add a brief sentence or two, if you wish, telling us why it’s your favorite.

Then join us next week as our countdown begins!

Your sister, Liz
@LizCurtisHiggs #50Proverbs #bgbg2

Annie and Lizzie Laughing at the Farm

P.S. My sweet friend, Ann Voskamp, is also encouraging us to memorize God’s Word in 2014. Consider making room in your heart and mind for two dozen or more verses from the gospel of John. This is the year we all go deeper with God (and share the joy of doing so!).

Your Sister, Liz Curtis Higgs Bible Gateway Blogger Grid Member January 2014 Your 50 Favorite Proverbs with Liz


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