"Apply your heart to instruction and your ears to words of knowledge." (Proverbs 23:12)

When our children come home from school, we often ask them, “What did you learn today?” We eagerly await the answer and hope it will be something new and worthwhile to them. As parents, we hope they grow in knowledge and maturity as they apply what they learn. I wonder if God looks at us like that. Does He also lovingly say, “What did you learn today,” or “What did you learn from that experience today,” or “Did you apply what you read from my Word to that experience?" He is our Heavenly Father, who loves us, and wants us to continue learning about Him and how to live a godly life. This means continuing to learn about Him, His love, and His principles. Life brings daily opportunities to apply God’s Word. Maturity happens when there is a willingness to acquire knowledge and a desire to apply this to our everyday lives.

Please consider the following:

✔️What have you learned from God’s word today you can apply at work? ✔️What have you learned from a difficult conversation you could apply to the next similar conversation? For example, how could you avoid being thought of as “difficult” or be at risk of damaging a relationship? ✔️What have you learned from a seemingly negative or hurtful experience you could apply to avoiding a similar experience or lessening its impact on you or others?

We can also learn from positive experiences as well as seemingly negative ones!

✔️If we consider, at the close of our day, God asking us, “What did you learn today” perhaps we can say something like: “Thank you for bringing the verse “quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to anger” to mind today as it helped me to be calm during a difficult conversation.”

True knowledge comes from God, and that is why spending time in His Word will continue to build our understanding of who He is, what He desires for us, what His principles are and how to live by those principles. When we apply our heart to instruction, we take steps to live as God would have us live in His strength. When we apply our heart to acquiring knowledge and instruction, we move from what the world thinks we should do to what God expects us to do.

This week...

1. Think about whether or not you are regularly growing in your knowledge of God.

"Apply your heart to instruction and your ears to words of knowledge." (Proverbs 23:12)

2. Do you have a process for regularly studying His Word?

"Give me understanding, so that I may keep Your law and obey it with all my heart." (Psalm 119:34)

3 Do you read God’s Word with the intent of applying it to your everyday life?

"For receiving instruction in prudent behavior, doing what is right and just and fair." (Proverbs 1:3)

4. When we store His Words of love, knowledge, and instruction, we are more likely to react the God’s way, not the world’s way.

"My son, if you accept my words and store up my commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding— indeed, if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding, and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God." (Proverbs 2:1-5)

5 Commit to learning something new about God every day you can apply to your life.

"When a country is rebellious, it has many rulers, but a ruler with discernment and knowledge maintains order." (Proverbs 28:2) Bringing This to God in prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father. Lord, You have given us an abundance of beautiful knowledge and instruction of who You are, how much You love us, and how to live a life that is right in Your eyes. Help us never to take this treasure lightly, but rather enjoy your Word as You intended us to, and to wisely and lovingly apply Your knowledge and instruction to our everyday lives. In Jesus' Name, Amen. May God richly bless you this week as you apply His loving Word and principles to your lives! Bonny,Christian Women at Work

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"The eyes of the Lord are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good." (Proverbs 15:3) When I was a little girl, my favorite place to sit was on my little wooden rocking chair. Whenever I sat down, I would move over as far as possible to leave some space beside me. I had been taught God is always with me, and in my childhood faith, I took this knowledge seriously, and literally. I moved over so God would have enough room to sit beside me. As adults, I wonder how often we are consciously aware that God is right beside us and we can "move over" to make room for Him? What would our workday look like if we acknowledged and remembered His constant presence by giving Him room in our hearts, lives, offices and boardrooms? It could include: ✔️Remembering during our day that He is with us and having peace and calm no matter what the situation ✔️Letting go of some of our impulses and allowing God to guide us ✔️Moving past disappointments and acknowledging God has a better plan for us ✔️Seeking His Word and allowing His love to flow through us to others ✔️Being quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to anger more often ✔️Taking time to make wise decisions that value others What is one thing you can start doing to regularly remember God is with you during your day?

Consider actually having a chair in your office to serve as a reminder to you! A business woman I know told me her corporation keeps a red chair in their boardroom, and this chair visually reminds them of their customers. Therefore, any decisions they make were always made with the thought of their customers being in the room.

What if you had a reminder that the comments you make, how you treat others, or your decisions making are always based on God being in the room? He is always there: we just need to be mindful of His presence and allow it to impact our thoughts, speech, action and reactions. I hope you enjoy the story which follows as you consider what you can do to be more constantly aware of God's presence. The Empty Chair: Inspirational Christian Story A man's daughter had asked the local pastor to come and pray with her father. When the pastor arrived, he found the man lying in bed with his head propped up on two pillows and an empty chair beside his bed. The priest assumed that the old fellow had been informed of his visit. "I guess you were expecting me," he said. "No, who are you?" "I'm the new associate at your local church," the pastor replied. "When I saw the empty chair, I figured you knew I was going to show up." "Oh yeah, the chair," said the bedridden man. "Would you mind closing the door?" Puzzled, the pastor shut the door. "I've never told anyone this, not even my daughter," said the man. "But all of my life I have never known how to pray. At church I used to hear the pastor talk about prayer, but it always went right over my head." "I abandoned any attempt at prayer," the old man continued, "until one day about four years ago my best friend said to me, 'Joe, prayer is just a simple matter of having a conversation with Jesus. Here's what I suggest. Sit down on a chair, place an empty chair in front of you, and in faith see Jesus on the chair. It's not spooky because He promised, 'I'll be with you always.' Then just speak to Him and listen in the same way you're doing with me right now." "So, I tried it and I've liked it so much that I do it a couple of hours every day. I'm careful, though. If my daughter saw me talking to an empty chair, she'd either have a nervous breakdown or send me off to the funny farm." The pastor was deeply moved by the story and encouraged the old guy to continue on the journey. Then he prayed with him, and returned to the church. Two nights later the daughter called to tell the pastor that her daddy had died that afternoon. "Did he seem to die in peace?" he asked. "Yes, when I left the house around two o'clock, he called me over to his bedside, told me one of his corny jokes, and kissed me on the cheek. When I got back from the store an hour later, I found him dead. But there was something strange, in fact, beyond strange - kinda weird. Apparently, just before Daddy died, he leaned over and rested his head on a chair beside the bed." -Author Unknown May God richly bless you as you become more and more aware of His presence, every day, at work. Have a great week! Bonny, Christian Women at Work

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When at work, there may be times when someone may disagree with what you have done or said, have misunderstood your intentions, or caused a disruption or delay in what you need to do. How do you usually react in those circumstances? Do you "lose your cool"? Or, do you remain even-tempered, no matter how difficult the situation?

"The one who has knowledge uses words with restraint, and whoever has understanding is even-tempered." (Proverbs 17:27)

  • How can you be even-tempered when things around you are chaotic and stressful?

  • How do you "keep your cool" when everyone around you is losing theirs?

It is essential to recognize that being even-tempered is not reflective of a lack of care. Instead, it reflects an ability to be calm in a situation when you need to use your energy to solve a problem. Also, if you are composed and working to resolve a concern, this may help others behave similarly.

We are better able to deal with a situation when we are prepared for it. You may be surprised by what has happened, but you never have to doubt how you should consistently react. Therefore, make a commitment to control your reaction to a stressful situation by deciding ahead of time never to lose control of your emotions. Instead, make a commitment to gather knowledge, use words with restraint, and be even-tempered.

Here are seven tips on how to remain "cool" at work and not "hot"-tempered:

1. Start every day with a prayer that God will give you the wisdom and strength to be even-tempered in all situations. Take Proverbs 17:27 above to work every day!

2. Recognize specific "triggers" that tempt you to "lose your cool." Is it a particular circumstance? A certain person? A certain emotion? Know what your "red flags" are.

3. Recognize that being calm can help others be calm.

"Fools give full vent to their rage, but the wise bring calm in the end." (Proverbs 29:1)

4. Determine a strategy when you feel you are starting to "lose your cool." Make the first step a quick prayer to God and ask Him for patience.

5. Recognize impatience will impede your understanding of the situation.

"Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly." (Proverbs 14:29)

6. Determine to be careful with what you say and when you say it.

"Be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to anger." (James 1:9)

7. It is important to remember we are human, and we make mistakes. There may be a situation when you have "lost your cool" and said things you regret. It is never too late to talk to the person and apologize. If there is something heavy on your heart because of a tense conversation, please go to the person and speak to them about it.

Taking It to God in Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father, my desire is to honor You in all I do and say. There will be times at work when I need to deal with stressful or upsetting situations. Help me to never "lose my cool" and react foolishly. Please give me the wisdom to be calm in every situation, seek knowledge and understanding, and use my words with restraint. I know I cannot do this on my own strength and ask for Your strength and guidance to react in a pleasing way to You. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

May God bless you this week as you take Proverbs to work!

Bonny, Christian Women at Work

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