It’s truth given as a warning, but being received this morning as a comfort. It is a reminder of the nature of the God of heaven which has profound implications for life on earth. That God possesses a divine knowledge. That all the ways of men and women are known. That He is the Ponderer!
For a man’s ways are before the eyes of the LORD,
and He ponders all his paths.
(Proverbs 5:21 ESV)
The Context (5:1,7): The teacher continues to exhort his son to be attentive, to incline his ear, to listen and not depart from the words of his mouth.
The Subject (5:3, 22): The forbidden woman. The seductress. Temptation which entices with lips dripping with honey and speech smoother than oil. Iniquity which ensnares. Sin that binds with cords.
The Solution (5:15, 18-19): Drink water from your own cistern. Be filled with the abundance offered from your own well. Desire nothing but your first love. Be intoxicated with that which is pure.
The Stimulus: The Ponderer. That there is One intimately familiar with every path taken. Not only passively familiar, but actively engaged. Laying out the ways of our heavenly homeland though not eliminating the voice of the alluring foreigner. Allowing us to choose, but also weighing our decisions.
And so, in context, the way of wisdom says flee from the hidden ways of sin because, in fact, they are not hidden at all. A man’s ways, a woman’s ways, are before the eyes of the LORD. And He who sees all will judge all.
Warning noted afresh. But beyond the warning, this morning as I chew on this great truth there is also a warming.
He ponders all my paths. Not just those that offend Him, but those also that seek Him. Far from some morbid picture of a God who only takes an interest in our failures as we succumb to heeding to the siren’s voice and following the allure of the world, with greater desire He is a God who longs to draw near to those who faithfully, though not perfectly, stumble along the roadway as sojourners on their way home. All the ways of the child of God are before His eyes. For He is the Ponderer.
Not some distant observer, but actively making level our paths and enabling us to walk in a manner worthy of our calling (Eph 4:1). Not unfamiliar with our trials but actively engaged in supplying mercy and grace to help in time of need (Heb. 4:16). Drawing alongside to help bear the burden, as He knows from first hand experience the weight that is sometimes ours as we seek to keep on keepin’ on.
For surely it is not angels that He helps, but He helps the offspring of Abraham. Therefore He had to be made like His brothers in every respect, so that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. For because He himself has suffered when tempted, He is able to help those who are being tempted.
(Hebrews 2:16-18 ESV)
He knows our struggles. He is familiar with our worries for the day. For our ways are before the eyes of our God. And He ponders all our paths.
And His grace is sufficient.
And His glory will be known.
For He is the Ponderer.
Note: Sue and I will be gone next week hanging out with our church family at our annual camping retreat. Will be offline. Lord willing, will be sharing my morning musings again on the 8th.