While the world is striving to attain perfection, I realize the only perfect One took my place, as a perfect sacrifice, on a cross. Through Him my weaknesses are made strong. I'm not afraid to be different, because I AM different. I'm a child of The Most High. I can be imperfect because I am loved by a Perfect God.

Praying for Direction. Lift by Prayer. Working for Peace. Labor by Power. Driven by Love. Love by Patience. Living by Faith. Live by Presence. Held by Hope. Learn by Faith.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Sticks and Stones

It's officially 2012!

I'm so excited!! I feel a sense of urgency and expectancy going into this new year.

A few days ago I posted on facebook:

"I wish people would realize the consequences before they spew venom out of their mouth."

Little did I realize that God would begin to work on that very subject in me, convicting me of my speech.

Lately at church, we have been doing a lot of talk about love.
Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.
1 Peter 4:8 NIV
Love brings unity. Love begs forgiveness. Love is the source of joy. Love never fails.

TJ told me to read James: There were a couple verses that jumped off the page at me.
19Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath

26 If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man's religion is vain.
Chapter 2
6And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.
13Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.

That's when it hit me. We can't have love for one another if our words don't show love.

Well today I was at Family Christian book store and I found a book. Get A Grip On Your Lip. (Beth Jones)  So I bought it. I'm going to share a few quotes and scriptures found in chapter 1. I may blog more on it later, I'm not sure yet.

Sticks and stones will break your bones, but words can break your heart, ruin your life, and hurt others. Words are loaded and their power cannot be overestimated.

Proverbs 16:23,24 says The heart of the wise teaches his mouth, and adds learning to his lips.  Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the bones.

Beth asks a challenging question, "have you ever thought about the diverse power of words?" My answer, no. I hadn't. She so wonderfully described their impact...
Words are power packed.  They cut to the core or spread honey to the heart; they bless or curse.  Words build up or tear down.  Words bring forth great things, or they destroy our lives.  Words frame our world.  Words turn things around.  Words direct our lives.  Words set the rudder for the courses of our lives.  Words start fires.  Words ensnare.  Words impart.  Words bring joy.  Words are seeds.  Words produce fruit.  Words are containers.  Words are carriers.  Words are not nebulous sound waves that dissipate into thin air; words can move mountains.  Words play a huge role in determining our eternal destiny, the salvation of our souls and the quality of our lives on earth.

Then, she asks another question. A powerful question! A question I want to wake up, and evaluate my life with every morning. Are your lips being controlled by the fruit of the Spirit? With love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control; OR are they being controlled by flesh, lust, anger, ego, selfishness, doubt, unbelief, strife, and jealousy?

Whoa is me Lord!!!! Set a guard over my mouth, O Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips Psalm 141:3 NIV
The mouth of the righteous is a well of life Proverbs 10:11 I want to be a well of life to those around me!

The words we use are in two categories.

The words we say to or about others: Our words can impart grace to the hearers or pierce their hearts like an arrow. Our words should be kind and edifying. We should guard our hearts and mouths in relation to comments about others

Words we say in faith: We have the God-given privilege of acknowledging, affirming, appropriating, confessing, and laying claim to the riches of God's Word with words.
1 Cor. 1:5 For in him you have been enriched in every way—with all kinds of speech and with all knowledge

Psalm 5:3 My voice You shall hear in the morning, O Lord' In the morning I will direct it to You, and I will look up.

Psalm 17:6 I have called upon You, for You will hear me, O God; Incline Your ear to me, and hear my speech.

Psalm 54:2 Hear my prayer, O God; Give ear to the words of my mouth.

Since God hears our words, we should listen to our words too. We should make sure we are speaking words the Lord can bless, use, prosper, maximize, and fulfill.

Amos 3:3 says Can two walk together, unless they are agreed?
No, they can't. It is very hard to walk with someone when there is a disagreement. Our agreement is made known by our words. If we want to walk in agreement with God, we must line our words up to His. He has "set the bar", we need to change our speech and "rise up" to His level.

The problem is we have inconsistent speech. James 3:9-11 says With our tongues we bless God our Father; with the same tongues we curse the very men and women he made in his image. Curses and blessings out of the same mouth! My friends, this can't go on.

When we have harsh words, we don't give God anything to work with.  We need to eliminate harsh words against the Lord, and His people, from our vocabulary.

Malachi 3:16 Then those who feared the LORD talked with each other, and the LORD listened and heard. A scroll of remembrance was written in his presence concerning those who feared the LORD and honored his name.

Beth lists some Simple Word Truths

-Words have the power of life and death.
Proverbs 18:21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.
-Words have the power to bring sweetness to our souls.
Proverbs 16:24 Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones.
-Words bring health to our bodies.
Proverbs 16:24 Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones.
-Words produce fruit.
Proverbs 12:14 A man shall be satisfied with good by the fruit of his mouth: and the recompence of a man's hands shall be rendered unto him.
-Words can turn away anger.
Proverbs 15:1 A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.
-Words can stir up strife.
Proverbs 15:1 A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.
-Words can frame our world.
Hebrews 11:3 These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.
-Words can snare us.
Proverbs 6:2 Thou art snared with the words of thy mouth, thou art taken with the words of thy mouth.
-Words take us places.
James 3:3,4 Behold, we put bits in the horses' mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body. Behold also the ships, which though they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth.
-Words can make mountains jump and trees die.
Mark 11:20-24 And in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots. And Peter calling to remembrance saith unto him, Master, behold, the fig tree which thou cursedst is withered away. And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God. For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.
-Words bind the devil.
Matthew 16:19 And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.
-Words loose God's power.
Matthew 16:19And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.
-Words make tremendous power available.
James 5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
-Words stop wind and waves.
Matthew 8:26 And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm.
-Words eradicate fevers and heal sick bodies.
Luke 4:38,39 And he arose out of the synagogue, and entered into Simon's house. And Simon's wife's mother was taken with a great fever; and they besought him for her. And he stood over her, and rebuked the fever; and it left her: and immediately she arose and ministered unto them.
-Words give wisdom and kindness.
Proverbs 31:26 She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
-Words teach.
Proverbs 16:21 The wise in heart shall be called prudent: and the sweetness of the lips increaseth learning.
-Words impart grace.
Ephesians 4:29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.
-Words bring us salvation.
Romans 10:8,9 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
-Words give wisdom.
Proverbs 1:6 To understand a proverb, and the interpretation; the words of the wise, and their dark sayings.
-Words can please the Lord.
Proverbs 15:26 The thoughts of the wicked are an abomination to the LORD: but the words of the pure are pleasant words.
-Words affect us: spirit, soul, and body.
Proverbs 16:24 Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones.
-Words feed people.
Proverbs 10:21 The lips of the righteous feed many: but fools die for want of wisdom.
-Words turn away anger.
Proverbs 15:1 A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.
-Words make a way.
Matthew 3:3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
-Words disperse knowledge.
Proverbs 15:7 The lips of the wise disperse knowledge: but the heart of the foolish doeth not so.
-Words provide favor with leaders.
Proverbs 16:13 Righteous lips are the delight of kings; and they love him that speaketh right.
-Words protect you.
Proverbs 13:2 A man shall eat good by the fruit of his mouth: but the soul of the transgressors shall eat violence.
-Words win favor.
Ecclesiastes 10:12 The words of a wise man's mouth are gracious; but the lips of a fool will swallow up himself.
-Words give joy.
Proverbs 15:23 A man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how good is it!
-Words are the language of faith.
2 Corinthians 4:13 We having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, I believed, and therefore have I spoken; we also believe, and therefore speak;
-Words provide a well of life.
Proverbs 10:11 The mouth of a righteous man is a well of life: but violence covereth the mouth of the wicked.
-Wise people teach their mouths.
Proverbs 16:23 The heart of the wise teacheth his mouth, and addeth learning to his lips.

Words are powerful! They can affect your life, family, friends, emotions, mentality, and most importantly, eternal salvation. My goal for 2012 is to be much more mindful of the impact of my tongue.

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