Jeremiah 10:21 says, "The shepherds are senseless and do not inquire of the Lord; so they do not prosper and all their flocks are scattered." Several proverbs warn about such consequences, but Jeremiah gives a specific example.
If we do not inquire of the
Lord, we are considered "senseless." Rom 9:16 and a proverb (that I can't find right now) says
that it is not by man's efforts but by God's mercy that a man prospers. If
we try to do it on our own, "our flocks will scatter" aka our purpose
will not be fulfilled.
Proverbs also says again and again not to be discouraged when
the wicked prosper. I never really understood why God would let them prosper, but you know, they
may be prospering in the world's eyes but not in the Lord's eyes. For
instance, if Jeremiah's shepherds are sitting there picking their toenails
while their sheep are scattering, they may get really good and toenail
picking, but not good at shepherding.
Now I am afraid not only that I wont prosper, but that I will think I am prospering when I am not. (I am not talking about accumulation of wealth= prosperity. That is not biblical. I am talking about giving love and justice to as many people as possible so that "His will be done on earth as it is in heaven." Lord, teach us how to pray. Matthew 6 and A Praying Life.
Read this little illustration. So well put: http://devotional.upperroom.org/devotionals/2012-02-01.