I. Prayer to enter the Lord’s presence:
Be still for a moment. “Lord, I give the day that is now past to you. It is yours. I give the day that is to come to you; help me to see where you are working and to join you there. Speak to me during these moments. I commit them and myself to you.”
II. Prayer of Confession:
“Lord, you are faithful to forgive me and cleanse me of my sin when I confess it to you. I confess my sin(s) of ______________. Thank you for forgiveness.” (1 John 1:9)
III. Prayer of Thanksgiving:
Choose to be thankful, speak out loud of what God has done.
“Thank you, Father, for _________________. Fill my heart and my mouth with gratitude throughout this day.”
IV. Scripture Reflection
Read: Proverbs Chapter 11
1 Dishonest scales are detestable to the Lord, but an accurate weight is his delight.
Verse 1 deals with honesty and deception. The word dishonest—refers to one who intends on tricking someone, to fraud them out of something. The Lord hates dishonesty. He says that those who do such things, and act unfairly, are detestable to Him. (Deut. 25:18) It offends His moral order.
When someone flat out cheats you—knowingly defrauds you—it leaves you feeling violated, feeling like you’ve been robbed!
Patty and I were robbed once. The thief broke into our house while we were on vacation and got away with several items. It was sickening to find our back door wide open, and our house ransacked. My emotions ran the gamut, from anger towards the person to bewilderment that someone would take the very things we had worked hard to get. It’s just wrong! And here Proverbs is telling us it is just as wrong to use deceptive business practices.
In ancient days scales were used throughout the day to conduct business transactions. These types of scales would have a plate on one side to hold the purchased or sold item, and one on the other side to fill with stones to determine the purchase’s weight. One commentary said that merchants seeking “to increase their profits…would use two sets of stone weights when weighing merchandise. Lighter stones were placed on the scales when selling (so that a lesser quantity was sold for the stated price), and heavier ones were used when buying (so that more was obtained for the same price). In essence, they were skimming a little off the top. For instance, when someone bought wheat, they use a lighter weight, it would end up shorting the customer about an eighth of an inch of grain. Who’s going to miss that! God, that’s who! The Bible says that is wrong.
It is wrong to cheat, to be dishonest in our actions as well as in our words. Whether it is at work, or at church, or at home, we must be honest in our actions. Are you honest in your day-to-day activities? Max Anders says we should govern our life so that if everyone acted as you did, all would be well. What could you change today to make his challenge a reality?
V. Prayer for others:
Pray specifically for the concerns of your life and the lives of others.
VI. Prayer of commitment:
“Lord God, I commit to love you with all my heart and with all my soul and with all my strength and with all my mind and to love my neighbor as myself. Empower me today to love you and others with everything that I am.” (Luke 10:27)
This Week’s Scripture Memory:
Proverbs 1:7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.