"Let not mercy and kindness (shutting out all hatred and selfshiness) and truth (shutting out all deliberate hyposcrisy or falsehood) forsake you; bind them about your neck, write them upon the tablet of your heart."
I am the children's department head at my church, the assignment is a mighty assignment, these little ones hearts and view of God is not solely our responsibility but we partner with their parents to bring them into the knowledge and understanding of Who God is.
For 4 years now I have written all the curriculum for our children's department. I love it, it is one of the greatest assignments from the Lord. However, it is alot of responsibility. Well, yesterday we had our lesson about King Saul and David, how much King Saul was jealous and envious of David (1 Samuel 18). King Saul wanted to be the one everyone cheered for, and they did, they contributed to him that "he had killed his thousands." but to David "his 10 thousands". King Saul, had deceived himself with his pride, his impatience his disobedience. His kingship had gone to his head, he thought he could rule without God. When God was the one who had placed him in the position in the first place.
Reading Proverbs 3:3 (amplified Bible) when I have read it before I have looked at it as putting away all hatred and selfishness, looking at it as towards other people. However, today I see it, one can have hatred and selfishness toward themselves, which causes them to be jealous, covetous, and envious. We can put these emotions and views on others, but the Truth any jealousy, coveteous, and envy, is really a hatred of ourselves.
We get deceived ourselves when we are jealous or envious, or coveteous of what others are doing, or receiving. It seems so contradictory, however stop and think about it. We all have been jealous or envious at one time, or the suggestion has been there to be. We compare ourselves with others, and what do we see? We see our lacking, our shortcomings. Not theirs.
But God says in Proverbs 3:1-2: My son (My daughter) forget not my law or teaching, but LET your heart KEEP MY commandments; for length of days and years of a life (worth living) and tranquility (inward and outward and continuing through old age till death), these shall add to you.
How about love thy neighbor as you love thyself. You can't truly love if you don't love yourself. Yes we all have things we don't like, and that God doesn't like because we all are born sinners. But once we receive Christ as our Lord and Savior, and IF we allow the Lord to show us those things He doesn't want in our life, and we allow Him to heal us, or we repent and turn from that attitude and/or behavior, and begin to know who we are in Christ. Then we can begin and truly love ourselves without it being self centered. Now we love ourselves being God centered.
When we live our lives God centered, we are overcoming wrong behaviors or attitudes, our flesh, our way of thinking. Then we truly can love our neighbor, as ourselves. Jesus didn't say our neighbor was be sweet and wonderful, in fact Jesus didn't say anything about our neighbor other than to love them as ourselves and to pray for them. Seek the Spirit of God how to demonstrate the Love of God to them.
So this verse is not as much about other people as it is for us. to be skillful in Godly Wisdom and instruction, to get the Holy Spirit understanding and insight, to receive instructions and the discipline of wise thoughfulness and righteousness, justice, and integrity. For us. Then we will live a life worth living.