Chapter CONTEXT from BibleRef.com:
The first segment of this chapter makes multiple references to personal integrity and wealth. It’s far better to be moral—and to have a reputation for honesty—than to have temporary wealth and be seen as a liar. And yet, the world all too often favors the wealthy, through shallow “friendships,” while ignoring those who have nothing material to offer. Solomon also notes one of the hallmarks of foolishness: reacting according to one’s desires instead of to truth. The fool jumps at the chance to do things their way. When the inevitable consequences come, they blame God instead of their own choices (Proverbs 19:1–7).
The next group of statements cover a wide range of ideas. These include typical comments about the value of wisdom, the consequences of ignoring it, the importance of common sense and practicality, and the fallible nature of human planning. Self-control should be sought and is important to instill in one’s children. Even as an adult, it’s crucial to take good advice when it’s given, rather than refusing to learn even from one’s mistakes (Proverbs 19:8–21).
Last in this chapter are comments which focus on respect for God’s will and the disastrous results of ignoring it. Following the Lord’s leading is not a magical formula which guarantees success. And yet, it is by far the most sensible way to pursue life. Even the inexperienced person should be able to see what happens when people defy God; they should learn the appropriate lesson from those observations. A person who refuses to learn—even a wise person who decides to stop learning—is inviting difficulty to their own life (Proverbs 19:22–29).
If y’all are anything like me, in our youth we were know-it-alls. My mom could not tell me anything, adults were just full of old stories that made no sense whatsoever. Then I got old! Well first I became a “Christian” and then I got old. I can not overemphasize the importance of having a right Biblical or Christian Worldview. It dictates that my earlier foolish ways are a thing of the past, and words of wisdom from the Bible, as in our main text for today drive how I go about my day. I am of course still a work in progress but
Let me see if I can break this down using the AMP version of our text:
20Listen to counsel, receive instruction, and accept correction, That you may be wise in the time to come.
First and foremost for me at least is my willingness to accept counsel. It has taken years of battling PTSD, and other things to get to the point that not only do I accept I seek wise counsel James 1:5. Wisdom and knowledge (spiritual) are far more important than any worldly advice that I can obtain.
21Many plans are in a man’s mind, But it is the Lord’s purpose for him that will stand (be carried out).
I may have been a know-it-all, once upon a time but if daily Bible reading teaches me nothing else it is that I will never stop learning. It is God’s wisdom found in His Holy Word, helped by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit that gives us a right understanding, Proverbs 4:7.
The older I get the wiser I get, not because of me but because I have learned to rely upon God and His Holy Word more and more.