Resources by Pat Canavan

Pat Canavan has served on the session and as staff at Tenth.  He is married to Holly, and they have two grown sons, Andrew and John, and one grandchild.

Aug 25, 2015

Preparing the Next Generation

By Pat Canavan, Director of Children’s Ministries

Scripture: Proverbs 22:6

Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from.  Proverbs 22:6.

Sundays at Tenth are busy for families, and as children move from one hour to the next, some may wonder if there is a coherent plan in the programs we offer. Our goal at Tenth is to raise up a generation that knows, honors…

Proverbs 30:17

The eye that mocks a father
and scorns to obey a mother
will be picked out by the ravens of the valley
and eaten by the vultures.

Hopefully, you are not eating your breakfast while reading this graphic verse from Proverbs today! The Lord really does not like it when parents are dishonored, and the penalty can be quite violent.  Disrespect…

Proverbs 30: 15-16

The leech has two daughters;
“Give and Give”, they cry.
Three things are never satisfied;
four never say, “Enough”:
Sheol, the barren womb,
the land never satisfied with water,
and the fire that never says, “Enough”.

We are given here vivid pictures from nature and life that illustrate a perpetual hungering for more; not so much from…

Proverbs 30: 11-14

There are those who curse their fathers
and do not bless their mothers.
There are those who are clean in their own eyes
but are not washed of their filth.
There are those-how lofty are their eyes,
how high the eyelids lift!
There are those whose teeth are swords,
whose fangs are knives,
to devour the poor…

Proverbs 30:10

Do not slander a servant to his master,
lest he curse you and you be held guilty.

Slander is very damaging, and its effects can linger for many years. It can take the form of an outright lie; it can be an exaggeration of a supposed offense; it can be an accurate description of an event without considering the consequences; it can have…

Proverbs 30: 7-9

Two things I ask of you;
deny them not to me before I die:
Remove far from me falsehood and lying;
give me neither poverty or riches;
feed me with the food that is needful for me,
lest I be full and deny you and say,
“Who is the Lord?”
or lest I be poor and steal and…

Proverbs 28: 22

A stingy man hastens after wealth
and does not know that poverty will come upon him.

A stingy man has a death grip on what he owns and has no desire to share his wealth to help others. We usually think of a man like Ebenezer Scrooge when we hear the word stingy. Ungenerous people are unhappy people. They are so concerned…

Proverbs 28:21

To show partiality is not good,
but for a piece of bread a man will do wrong.

This proverb shows the depravity of mankind. The sin of partiality is a very common sin in our experience. We can all be guilty of it from time to time. And we can fall into this sin without much temptation (a piece of bread). It doesn’t…

Proverbs 28:20

A faithful man will abound with blessings,
but whoever hastens to be rich will not go unpunished.

The key difference in the character of the faithful man and the "get rich quick" person lies in integrity. The faithful man’s priority is to carry out his responsibilities and see them through to the end. He keeps his word and promises, he can be trusted to act…

Proverbs 28:19

Whoever works his land will have plenty of bread,
but he who follows worthless pursuits will have plenty of poverty.

This proverb is about focus and dedication. We do not like doing routine things because they tend to be repetitive, boring, and endless. But it is in the doing of those routine things that we find reward and fulfillment. Maybe you are tired of changing diapers, doing…

Proverbs 28:2

When a land transgresses, it has many rulers,
    but with a man of understanding and knowledge, its stability will long continue.

When a nation or people transgress they usually require a heavier hand, whether that takes the form of more police or more government workers overseeing many regulations. They require many leaders or officials showing them what to do and enforcing the…

Proverbs 28:1

The wicked flee when no one pursues,
    but the righteous are bold as a lion.

The wicked lose strength and courage when the odds are stacked against them. They thrive when they can lie, cheat, ambush, and rely on greater numbers to fight and win their battles. Their confidence lies in what they see and experience. When they are alone or cannot…

Proverbs 27:9

Oil and perfume make the heart glad,
    and the sweetness of a friend comes from his earnest counsel.

Friendship is often portrayed on sitcoms as a group of people continually taking verbal jabs at one another or laughing at someone’s expense. That is not friendship.

God brings you gifts in the form of true friends to enjoy life with and…

Proverbs 27:8

Like a bird that strays from its nest
    is a man who strays from his home.

The bird’s nest is for protection from predators and shelter from the elements. It is for raising the young in security. The home is also a place of security, trust, and support. Anyone that strays from home will, like a bird, be alone, likely end up…

Proverbs 27:7

One who is full loathes honey,
    but to one who is hungry everything bitter is sweet.

I am sure many of us can recall a time when we were “stuffed”. Maybe it was a Thanksgiving dinner or other holiday eating occasion; perhaps it was a second (or third?) dessert that you lived to regret. Kids can stuff themselves with candy and spoil…

Proverbs 26:27

Whoever digs a pit will fall into it,
    And a stone will come back on him who starts it rolling.

We have all heard the saying, “He who lives by the sword, dies by the sword”. This proverb is a variation on that theme. He who starts trouble will eventually get caught up in its web. There are too many variables at…

Proverbs 26:24-26

Whoever hates disguises himself with his lips
    and harbors deceit in his heart;
when he speaks graciously, believe him not,
    for there are seven abominations in his heart;
though his hatred be covered with deception,
    his wickedness will be exposed in the assembly.

We have a person described here who is hateful, yet covers up the…

Proverbs 26:23

Like the glaze covering an earthen vessel
    are fervent lips with an evil heart.

Glaze can cover and hide what is underneath while giving the appearance of revealing its inner substance. We can see the clay, but the glaze covers over any imperfections and causes the clay to have an alluring shine that it really doesn’t possess itself. In the same way…

Proverbs 25: 26

Like a muddied spring or a polluted fountain is a righteous man who gives way before the wicked.

When evil is unchallenged, it spreads and prospers. It does not go away or does not remain conveniently penned up. By its very nature, evil pushes boundaries and tests our resolve. If we do not stand up to it, evil will eventually win the day.

Proverbs 25:23

The north wind brings forth rain,
and a backbiting tongue, angry looks.

The slanderer and backbiter are character assassins and murderers of a person’s good name and reputation. These offenses are a clear violation, by extension, of the sixth commandment—"Thou shalt not kill." The slanderer hurts more than his immediate prey, he also hurts himself and his hearers. If you are approached by someone…

Proverbs 25:21-22

If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat,
and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink,
for you will heap burning coals on his head,
and the Lord will reward you.

Many of us might be hard-pressed to write an enemies list, but Christians actually have many enemies. Whoever is an enemy of Christ and the gospel…

Proverbs 23: 17-18

Let not your heart envy sinners,
     but continue in the fear of the Lord all the day.
Surely there is a future,
     and your hope will not be cut off.

The writer of Psalm 73 had a problem envying the unrighteous and for very visible reasons. The wicked prospered and everything went well for them. They had no…

Proverbs 23: 12

Apply your heart to instruction
and your ear to words of knowledge.

The work of applying our hearts and ears to the Word of God is not easy and requires the work of the Holy Spirit. The heart needs to be forcefully applied to good instruction because it is deceitful and desperately wicked (Jer. 17:9). The heart, on its own, is only…