A Father’s Wise Counsel!

By Reverend J. Loren Russell

Proverbs 10:1 NKJV

“The proverbs of Solomon:
A wise son makes a glad father, but a foolish son is the grief of his mother.”

Many people mistake a proverb for a promise. A proverb is defined as a saying that “expresses a perceived truth that is based on common sense or experience”. A proverb is not a promise as some contend. Some read the book of Proverbs and attach promises to them, as if following the truth of common sense or experience will result in the supposed promise becoming a reality. The reality is this; a proverb is not a promise.

When Solomon wrote the book of Proverbs, he provided instruction, particularly to his sons. Sometime the conveyance of the proverb came in the form of commands.
Many of the proverbs Solomon shared were expressed in contrast. The text for this article uses that approach; a wise son making a glad father, but a foolish son bringing grief to his mother. Using the preposition or conjunction “but,” shows the differences between a wise and a foolish son. Both received wise counsel from their father, one uses it intelligently, the other thoughtlessly.

In my own life experience, I had a father who imparted wise counsel to all three of his sons and his one daughter. To be completely transparent, none of us consistently took his sage counsel wisely. In fact, we were all guilty of foolishly squandering it. As we aged, if I can use the “but” conjunction here, I can safely say that each of us eventually did not bring grief to our mother, but gladness to our father. In other words, it took time for the wise and constructive counsel of our father to sink into the heads of his children.

On this Father’s Day, and the eve of Juneteenth, the real Day of Liberation for enslaved Africans in America, I want to encourage the men, fathers, uncles, and father figures in our society to remain faithful, sharing wise counsel with your children and anyone who enters your circle of influence. Many former slaves shared wise counsel with their children, counsel that encouraged steadfastness in their quest for freedom. Many never saw that freedom, but their descendants have!

Proverbs may not be promises, but if we share their wise counsel wide and far enough, their perceived truth and common-sense approach to everyday circumstances just might change the trajectory of many wayward sons and daughters.

Happy Fathers and Liberation Day!

Rev. J. Loren Russell is an associate minister at Goodwill Baptist Church and is the spiritual leader of both LaGree Baptist Church and the Evangelical Church of God, all in the Bronx, President/CEO of The JLR Company for Church Financial & Strategic Consulting (718-328-8096), and hosts “Matters of Faith – The Radio Show” on Monday nights from 8:00 – 10:00 PM on Facebook Live. Be sure to Friend “Matters of Faith” on YouTube and email us at mattersoffaith.mof@gmail.com. Order your copy of Matters of Faith: The eBook at www.smash words.com/books/view/993177.

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