By Bishop Gregory Cameron
Solomon in the biblical tradition is the quintessence of human wisdom, received as a gift from God. These chapters purport to offer a collection of his key sayings as they were handed down and remembered, and each verse stands in its own right. Aphorisms range across many subjects – from advice about honest conversation to advice about honest trading. There’s a common thread – they way in which we relate to other people is important in life and a high standard of personal behaviour reaps its rewards. Integrity is a key element in faithful living.
The Psalms speak to the full range of human experience – and here’s a psalm for those times when everything seems to be going against us. When times are at their toughest, we need to be on our knees, seeking God’s help, and asking for a calm and trusting spirit.
The heart of Paul’s ministry is revealed in Ephesians 3 (either his own recollection or another’s testimony to profound effect). It was to proclaim how God’s mercy had been made universal, for all people, in the action of Jesus. For the writer, God had always planned to bring reconciliation into the world: the plan was suddenly unveiled in Jesus’ sacrificial death, and Paul was called by God to proclaim that truth and that invitation as far and wide as he could. However, there’s both a summons and a promise for us as we read the passage: will we put down deep roots into God’s love by spending time in prayer, reflection and study? God offers us in Christ the power to win the promise of holiness in our lives.
Which of the proverbs of Solomon seems to say the truest thing in your own experience of life?
What are the practical ways in which you pause in life to put down roots into God’s love?
Help me, Lord, to steer a right path through life. Make me honest in my actions and my dealing with other people. Keep me in touch with you and conscious of your blessings. “Lord, I shall be very busy this day. I may forget thee, do not thou forget me.” (Sir Jacob Astley, 1579-1652)
Bishop Gregory Cameron is Bishop of the Diocese of St. Asaph in Wales.