The king’s favor is toward a wise servant: but his wrath is against him that causeth shame.
– Proverbs 14:35
This proverb is a truism, or a general rule that competence and diligence are rewarded (Proverbs 22:29). People often think that promotion comes to a person because of luck, connections, or back room dealings. Those things do happen, but we generally receive what we have earned, or reap what we sow (Proverbs 17:2). The two phrases show both sides—favor and wrath. A servant causes shame by being unreliable, lazy, incompetent, etc. (Proverbs 10:5). Everyone makes mistakes and has to learn from them. The servant who does this will be rewarded with favor, and the obstinate servant with wrath (Proverbs 13:18).