Writing Proverbs

I’ve always enjoyed the book of Proverbs in the Bible. The short, memorable sayings hit hard, like espresso shots of truth. You might say that the book is a bit like Twitter, but without the hot-takes, the cut-downs, and the crazy weird stuff and arguments… so not like Twitter at all, actually.

The whole point of the book of Proverbs is to gather wisdom and knowledge about life and living, and to pass it on to the next generation. Which got me thinking: if Solomon can write proverbs to pass on what he learned about life to help his children, why can’t I? I have lived for a little while now, and I’ve learned a few things along the way. Why shouldn’t I try to capture some of those things in proverbs—short, memorable sayings that might help my children, or someone else?

Years ago, I decided to give it a try. I’ve written quite a few proverbs since then, and a lot of them are not that great. None of them are Scripture. But I have found the process of writing them helpful in clarifying the essence of what I have learned for myself, and I hope some of them can benefit others as well. Here’s a few examples of the proverbs of Seth:

Of all the abilities, teachability is the least respected and most valuable.

Complicated questions deserve complicated answers.

If you’re looking for offence, you’ll find it.

It’s easy to see the beauty in a stranger’s streets, and the rubbish in your own.

A sermon without Jesus is like a car with no engine. It rolls easily down to where people are, but has no power to lift them up again.

Just because it’s 50% off doesn’t mean it’s a good deal. Half of insane is still crazy.

If you want to make the people you’re with feel insignificant, check your phone.

Everyone in the world knows something you don’t, but you can learn it from them if you ask the right questions.

Most romantic movies wouldn’t have a plot if the lead characters communicated well at the beginning.

The road to happiness has a name: Thankfulness.

I’m curious: have you ever tried writing proverbs? If so, I’d love to hear some of yours in the comments, or some from others that have helped you.

2 thoughts on “Writing Proverbs”

  1. I wrote a few to pass on to my kids, too. Here are some I really hope they remember:

    Anyone can learn from his own mistakes; the wise learn from the mistakes of others.
    Bad habits are contagious.
    Decide when you’re young who you want to be when you’re old.
    When given a “now or never” choice, it’s usually safer to choose never.
    Don’t be surprised when sinners act like sinners.

    Liked by 1 person

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