Don't waste your time on a scoffer.
If you reason with an arrogant cynic, you'll get slapped in the face; confront bad behavior and get a kick in the shins. So don't waste your time on a scoffer; all you'll get for your pains is abuse. But if you correct those who care about life, that's different—they'll love you for it! Save your Save your breath for the wise—they'll be wiser for it; tell good people what you know—they'll profit from it. -Proverbs 9:7-10 MSG
Some of the words that jump out from this passage at me are: arrogant; cynic; scoffer and abuse. When I think of them I wonder what causes people to exhibit these traits. Sometimes I have them - being religious is not a cure for them. Sometimes I think that these things rear their heads when we are reminded of past pains and broken dreams. On occasion I am inwardly cynical when people talk to me about prayer as I remember my unanswered prayers.
When I think of these verses I think of what Jesus said in Matthew's gospel: "Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces." When we are vulnerable ... when we share the most holy part of our heart ... with people we risk that our words and even our heart will be smashed and broken. It is why we must exercise wisdom in the sharing of things that are sacred to us.
Father, help us to not be cynical or arrogant. Let the words of a scoffer be far from us. Help us to be humble.