This devotional series examines a verse or two from a chapter of Proverbs each day of January 2017.
If you have found honey, eat only enough for you, lest you have your fill of it and vomit it. ~Proverbs 25:16
We can have too much of a good thing. That’s what Solomon tells us with this proverb. Many people enjoy honey, its sweetness and its flavor, but what happens when you eat too much? A Pooh Bear with his hand constantly in whatever honeypot he can find might make for humor in cartoons, but in real life if we eat and eat and eat honey, then it will churn the stomach and make its way back up.
Honey vomited is no pleasure at all.
Ultimately, this is a lesson in self-control. Not exercising control over how much you eat leads to bad consequences. In the very next verse, Solomon warns that not exercising self-control over how often you visit your neighbor can result in strife. The last proverb in this chapter says: “A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls.”
A lack of self-control can result in hardships for us and the people around us. When we can’t control our words, actions, and appetites, then we’ll stop at nothing to get what we want. We won’t care who it hurts as long as we possess the things we are after.
But if we belong to Jesus and we have the Holy Spirit within us, then we have the power for true self-control. Lacking self-control we’ll harm ourselves or our neighbors. Having self-control and we’ll show love to ourselves and to our neighbors. Jesus placed a lot of emphasis on loving one’s neighbor, and the Spirit within us helps us live in a way that is honoring to Christ and others.
So, enjoy your honey, but do so with self-control. Then will come the enjoyment without unneeded pain.