Click this link to hear an audio version of the below text narrated by SOTH member Jerry Rhinehart: http://sothrichfield.podbean.com/
“The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel: for gaining wisdom and instruction; for understanding words of insight; for receiving instruction in prudent behavior, doing what is right and just and fair; for giving prudence to those who are simple, knowledge and discretion to the young— let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance— for understanding proverbs and parables, the sayings and riddles of the wise. The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction. Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction and do not forsake your mother’s teaching. They are a garland to grace your head and a chain to adorn your neck.”
In yesterday’s gospel reading Jesus said: “…be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell”. He is referring to God, not Satan. But fearing God is different than being scared of Him. Fearing God is having a deep respect for His authority as the Creator and Lord of all things. For example, a baseball player might be afraid of his coach. That fear is a respect and honor for who the coach is and his role in leading the team. But once that fear turns to fright the coach becomes unapproachable and that fright destroys a team and their ability to play to their full potential. Because of Jesus, we never have to be scared of our Father or approaching Him, but we should respect, honor and fear Him above all else. Right now, whose opinion or judgment are you giving more authority to than God’s? Is there someone or something that is consuming your thoughts and your energy more than God? Ask God to forgive you and trust that He already has, because of what Jesus has done to make us beloved children of God!