Breakfast with Solomon - Proverbs 30:8
"Keep deception and lies far from me, give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with the food that is my portion"
This is a very interesting proverb about living life with a clear head.
The word deception is the Hebrew word saw which means emptiness or vanity or falsehood. It suggests that one of the things that is possible in life is to spend our whole life pursuing what is really empty or cotton-candy like. A translation of the word in Ecclesiastes is soap bubbles.
He is saying, “God, please, I don't want to spend my life doing useless things that don't amount to anything.”
I watch people be captivated by hobbies or sports teams or activities which, in the grand scheme of life, is nothing and being excited about it will accomplish nothing. If you ask the people about it – at a sober moment – does this really matter? They will say, no; but they are all wrapped up in it and choose to be emotionally, mentally, and physically consumed by this thing.
The writer of the Proverb is saying: Don't let me spend my life in this deluded fashion. Don't let me ignore relationships, damage people, and push away at real impact and real wisdom for some consuming emptiness. I want my life to count; to make a difference.
The word lies is the word kazab, which is falsehood or lies. It is interesting that the writer of this proverb uses both the word emptiness and lies. The first word involves that which pretends to have substance and depth but does not. The second deals with what is a lie or false or not true in a much more direct sense. This is not something that turns out to be nothing when really examined against the real values in life. This is that you have been directly deceived and thereby robbed of time, money, and energy.
The writer of the Proverb wants God to make sure that the people God sends his way do not feed him lies. He would rather have the truth about his work, about his relationships, about his life than lies.
It is interesting that this is a prayer. It suggests that God can give us a life that is all deception and lies. But the righteous person wants reality and impact and truth.
How much of your life is deception? How many people around you are lying to you? Can you handle God letting you get a glimpse of the real impact of your life?