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 20
Wine is a mocker, beer is a brawler;
whoever goes astray because of them is not wise.
There he is again, the mocker! He’s got his running buddy, the brawler with him. And guess what, they’re boozing it up!
Wine and Beer are personified as people of low character. Remember who the mocker is? He’s the one we want to avoid. He’s obnoxious and obstinate in his folly, and what makes it even worse, he’s unwilling to change! He’s prideful, a source of conflict, immoral, and smug! He’s definitely an example of what not to follow. The brawler is not much different, there’s always commotion and unrest wherever he goes. He’s loud and unruly. What feeds their behavior is an excessive amount of alcohol! You’ve probably seen this play out a time or two. Drinking too much alcohol feeds terrible choices that lead people to get out of their right mind, and quickly begin acting foolishly—like fighting! Why? Because their judgment is clouded. Drinking too much destroys rational thinking.
The warning here is this: don’t get drunk! Do this, and you’ll be more likely to stay on the right path. However, the advice goes down to a deeper level, it’s a warning against wrong choices! It’s calling the reader to decide what they’re going to do before the bottle is even opened. For some, it may be a decision to abstain from drink. The wise person knows how to control their appetites and how to control their liquor. Too much alcohol is self-destructive and will damage our lives.
So the vice is too much alcohol, which leads to unhealthy behavior. What is valued is not drinking too much—not getting drunk. The virtue is choosing to be self-controlled. Not knowing when to stop only leads us astray and is a blight on our lives.
Max Anders says, “Few paths lead to disaster more surely than lack of self-control. The person who cannot tame his emotions and discipline his desires soon finds himself mired in predicaments he never expected.” You know he is right in what he says. The path of excess alcohol leads to disaster. Don’t let it be so with you.
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:
Honor the Lord with your wealth, with the firstfruits of all your crops.