I love proverbs, those pithy little sayings filled with advice about how to live life well. Why do I like them? They’re short. They’re wise. And their advice often comes wrapped in a concrete image. Today I’d like to share some proverbs with you. Some of them are ancient. Others are modern. Some have a known author. Most are anonymous. As you read these proverbs, see if any of them make you stop and say, “Hmmm,” or “How true!” or “I don’t know. That hasn’t been my experience!”
- The heart carries the feet. (Hebrew)
- If you think you’re too small to make a difference, you haven’t been in bed with a mosquito. (Anita Roddick)
- Your fears are bad counselors.
- If you can’t sleep, don’t count sheep; talk to the Shepherd.
- A pessimist is someone who complains about the noise when opportunity knocks.
- Never mind trying to remember the names of the 7 dwarfs or the 8 reindeer. Just remember the 10 commandments.
- The harder I work, the luckier I get.
- Some people march to a different drummer—and others polka.
- More diets begin in dress shops than in doctors’ offices.
- You do not know your true character until you have run out of gas, purchased something on the installment plan, or raised an adolescent. (Marcelen Cox)
- No one needs more love than someone who doesn’t deserve it.
- He who plants trees loves others besides himself.
- Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried. (G, K. Chesterton)
- Stop worrying about the potholes in the road and celebrate the journey.
- Bad news goes about in clogs; good news in stocking feet. (Welsh proverb)
- The past is a guidepost, not a hitching post.
- A well-adjusted person is one who can play bridge or golf as if they were games.
- Before you marry, keep two eyes open; after you marry, shut one. (Jamaican proverb)
- He who cannot dance puts the blame on the floor. (Hindi proverb)
- A thing not worth doing isn’t worth doing well.
- Nothing seems expensive on credit. (Czech proverb)
- Praise loudly, blame softly. (Russian proverb)
- Many a shabby colt makes a fine horse. (Irish proverb)
- A lie travels around the world while the truth is still putting on her shoes. (French proverb)
- Be not simply good; be good for something.
As Christians we guide our living not merely by wise proverbs, but, more importantly, by the wise and challenging words of Jesus who walks with us every day of every year. As we end 2015 and venture into 2016, let us pray the words of this beautiful song, “How Great Is Our God” by Chris Tomlin—who reminds us that “time is in his hands.” Happy New Year!
Do any of the proverbs above stand out for you? If so, why?
Do you have a favorite proverb you’d like to share with us?
Do you know any proverb that describes or summarizes this past year for you? Is there any proverb that you’d like to remember during this coming year?