Pondering Proverbs: The Biblical BBB (Part 1)

 A false balance is an abomination to the LORD, but a just weight is His delight.
Prov. 11:1 NASB

According to my Google search findings, the first Better Business Bureaus (BBB) began in 1912. Today, BBBs serve communities across every state in the U.S. as well as the District of Columbia. You’ll find BBBs in 13 provinces of Canada, and a few branches in Mexico. Evaluating and monitoring local and national businesses and charities is their main job. Honest advertising and selling practices mean customer satisfaction, and that’s good business. [info from Wikipedia and]

In my reading of Proverbs over the years, I noticed a few verses dealing with weights, balances, and scales. The fact that false or differing weights are an abomination to the Lord caught my eye. An ABOMINATION. That’s strong language! In other words, according to the New Living Translation, Contemporary English Version, and Amplified Bible, if a buyer or seller is being dishonest when doing business, God hates it, He detests it, and it’s extremely offensive and shamefully sinful!

In the days of the writing of Proverbs, a dishonest buyer or seller might secretly carry in his bag a stone (weight) for buying and a different stone (weight) for selling. The practice was clearly wrong and used for the sake of the cheater’s own gain. Though our methods for measuring and weighing have changed considerably, the illegal practice continues, just with a different look in the 21st century.

What might the application be for us today? Whether you work for a company, own your own business, or are a consumer of goods, none of us is exempt from the temptation to be dishonest, even unfair, when buying or selling.  Ask yourself these questions:

Have I ever eaten fruit in my buggy before purchasing it?

As an employee, have I been paid for hours that I didn’t actually work?

As a business owner, have I ever knowingly sold defective merchandise at full cost?

Do you attempt to use coupons for items that aren’t exactly what is printed on the coupon?

Ok, enough of the negative already! I think you get my point.

Let us be encouraged by the last half of our theme verse today –

but a just weight is His delight. (emphasis mine)

Whether we’re the consumer or the provider, let’s be found trustworthy and fair at all costs. God loves it when we do what is right, whether we’re shopping for merchandise or running our own business.  He’s pleased when the rule we live by is one of integrity.                                                                  [Digging Deeper – Deut. 25:13-15; Prov. 16:11, 20:10, 23; Amos 8:4-6; Micah 6:10-13]

Counting the cost,

Beverly <><



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Trusting God in Tough Times: When We Don’t Understand God’s Plan

It’s inevitable. Tough times will come along during our lives. A pastor friend once told me something along these lines: “You’re either coming out of a time of struggle, in the midst of a difficult time, or heading toward a challenging time.” The Christian life (or any life) is not always a bed of roses—and the Bible doesn’t promise us a life free from trouble. This week, let’s take a Scriptural look at trusting God through difficult circumstances.


When We Don’t Understand God’s Plan

“Sovereign Lord, you are God! Your covenant is trustworthy, and you have promised these good things to your servant.” 

2 Samuel 7:28, NIV

Maze_THURSDAYYou’ve just lost your job. You want to have a baby, but it’s not happening and you can’t understand why. A loved one has been diagnosed with cancer. Your marriage is falling apart in spite of your best efforts. Whatever your particular situation, your dreams are crushed and it hurts.

How can this be God’s plan for your life? Sometimes our dreams don’t come to fruition and our best laid plans fall apart.

When things don’t go according to my plans, I’m tempted to assume God has forgotten about me. Maybe the details of my life just aren’t important to the God of the universe. Can I trust Him? In the midst of my pain, I tend to blame God instead of trusting Him.

Even though we sometimes feel forgotten, God is present. He doesn’t overlook His promises to us. He delights in us and wants the best for us.

I love how Corrie ten Boom explained God’s plan. She said, “Every experience God gives us, every person He puts in our lives is the perfect preparation for the future that only He can see.” (The Hiding Place). This is an especially powerful testimony since Corrie ten Boom spent almost a year suffering in three different prisons, including a concentration camp in Germany, after she and her family helped Jews escape the Nazi Holocaust during World War II. Ultimately, Corrie ten Boom was released (due to a technical error) and spent the next 40 years speaking and writing about God’s love and the power of forgiveness.

God is faithful, and He is able to use every circumstance to draw us closer to Him. Even if we can’t see how the pieces will fit together, God is weaving a beautiful story in our lives. He loves us more than we can imagine. In that infinite love, he created a plan for each of us. We can trust that God will show up. Believe anything is possible with God. He is trustworthy.

Dear Lord, we put ourselves and our futures in your hands. We believe you will do a powerful work with and through our lives. We submit our plans to you. Line up our plans with Your plans. God, Your plans are greater and Your ways higher.

Learning to trust more fully,