Words Are Just Words, Right?

Today’s verse of the day in my Bible app is Ephesians 4:29  (KJV)
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.
I got to thinking about just what corrupt communication is.  As a young person (way back when, right?!) I used to think this verse referred specifically to swearing and dirty jokes.  But in more recent years, I have come to think otherwise.
At Christmas we hear children being told that “Santa is making a list and checking it twice, gonna find out who’s naughty… or nice.”  I think perhaps we should have our own list based on this scripture in Ephesians.
So at the top of MY list of what I consider corrupt communication, yes I have swearing and dirty jokes.  Okay.  But what else could and should go on that list?
How about sassing?
Cleverly hidden insinuations?
Snide remarks.
Cutting comments.
Put downs.
Ugly comparisons.
Boasting.
Bragging.
Lying.
Deceitful sidestepping of the truth.  (those little white lies, right?)
Rude comments.
Superiority, even in the inflection of the voice (another form of put down)
Gossip.
Slander.
Backstabbing.
Tactless blurting rather than tactful sharing.
Grumbling.
Dismissals.
The list could go on and on.  And I am freely admitting I have to work at it to be free of a lot of these.
So what is the big deal, and why does it matter?  Because, 21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.  Proverbs 18, (KJV)
We speak thoughtlessly, not considering that by our very words we are giving life or taking life… we are giving support or we are undermining…we are strengthening or we are weakening.
We do this not only to others, but to ourselves as well.  Think on this a bit!  Who speaks more negative into your heart and life than yourself?  Would you take the negative garbage you thoughtlessly sling at yourself from anyone else?  And why do we believe that garbage about ourselves?  We compare our worst with the best of others.  Unfair!!!  It is not true according to God’s Word, so whose report do we believe?
Let’s work at getting it right.  Let’s set a guard against thoughtless words and mindless self-talk!  Let’s stop with the unforgiving, hateful thoughts so we don’t have stuff there to spew in the next heated moment!  Sometimes at home is the hardest of all for me to contain my tongue and be kind.  I just ‘let ‘er fly’ … and then regret, have to ask forgiveness of God and my loved one(s) and then forgive myself.  Why do I need to guard my thoughts?  Because in Matthew 12:34b  (KJV) we learn that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.
And lets not minimize the damage by claiming we were just kidding!  What is in the heart comes out when we speak, especially when something aggravates us.  So we must be careful what is allowed to remain in our system!  We need to cleanse our hearts, or in other words, keep short accounts.  Instead of holding grudges, nurturing hurts and recounting wrongs done, let’s deal with stuff, sort through our motives, be aware of and direct our focus to honorable thoughts, and clean up our act!  Philippians 4:8 and 9 in NKJV sums it up nicely:  Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things arelovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.
And again, in The Message:  8-9 Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies.
Lord, I thank You for this reminder today of ways to live in harmony and peace.  I pray that I have the mind of Christ this day, that I think upon the lovely, the good, the uplifting things.  Help me to look upon the negatives in myself and others with a heart of love and compassion, giving grace and forgiving, ever changing more and more into Your image.  Thank You for these blessings!  And may I be a blessing, an encouragement, a strengthening to my world.  In Jesus Name and for His sake I pray, and I receive this blessing!  Amen.  And AMEN!
Psalm 19:14King James Version (KJV)  14 Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer.
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Seek Ye First

SEEK YE FIRST

 

We sit alone and wonder, “Lord, when will my turn be?”

When all the while He’s calling, “Child, come; spend time with me.”

“Seek ye first the Kingdom,” is what we’re called to do

“And then,” He says, “these other things will be added unto you.”

 

We want the Lord to hear us, when we turn to Him and cry,

Yet to yield and do His bidding, we only weakly try.

There’s so much to distract us: our daily work and play–

That to our heavenly father, we seldom stop to pray.

 

We mean to do His bidding, and answer to His call,

But easily lose focus.  Our strength indeed is small.

Oh Father please forgive us.  Cause us to understand

The importance of obeying, and fulfilling our Master’s plan.

 

For souls about us are dying without a shred of hope.

They have no faith in Jesus, they don’t know how to cope.

They’re lost without a compass, so tired–in need of rest.

They do not know God loves them, and offers them His best.

 

That’s why we need God’s power to live His love each day

To shine God’s light upon the path for those who have lost their way.

His strength in us is perfect when our weakness we give to Him

He takes the foolish of this world to confound those who need Him.

 

Let’s lay aside the habits and things that now sidetrack

That keep us from God’s purpose, let’s to His will turn back.

It takes an effort on our part.  God does not do it all.

“Lord, we repent and turn to You.  Be thou our all in all.”

 

–written January 7, 2007.  Pat Hunter.

 

Like An Eagle

Found a treasure and wanted to share with you!

We’ve had a guest speaker in Sunday School subbing for regular teacher last week and this. Topic: Like An Eagle. It has been inspiring and informative. The Teacher researched eagles and compared them to our Faith Walk. Instead of just using Isa. 40:31, the Lord instructed her to include vs. 27-31. I started jotting down thoughts as she read the verses last week. After I shared my notes with her, I was asked to share them with the class today.  I woke up this a.m. to print notes and instead started typing   The Lord blessed me with COME UP HIGHER as well as, from the Sunday previous, the notes.   All are included here…I’m sharing in hopes you’ll be blessed as I have been by these.

Sunday AM, March 4/2012
PITY PARTY or FULL STEAM AHEAD?  The opening verses in Sunday School caught my attention and got me thinking.
“Why do you say, oh Jacob, and complain, oh Israel,
‘My way is hidden from the Lord;
My cause is disregarded by my God?’
Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The everlasting God, the LORD,
The Creator of the ends of the earth, neither faints, nor is weary.
His understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength.
Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall;
But those who wait on the LORD shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint…”
Isaiah 40:27-31
* * * * * * * * * * * * *
To say “My way is hidden from the Lord,” to say “My cause is disregarded (not even seen) by my God” is to speak against the very essence of who God is, to ‘make Him less”, to actually belittle and limit Him.
For God, the “One, True God” with a capital G, knows all, sees all, cares about all. Is He not omnipresent, as in He is everywhere? Then why say my ‘way is hidden’? Not possible! He is there! He is in my presence, on my trail, walking my personal path of life.
Is He not omniscient, all-knowing? To say “my way is disregarded by my God” is to imply that God does not care enough to look my way and see my plight. God is love. He cannot “not care”!
To complain is to be untrusting. To complain is to show lack of trust. Our lack. Yet we put the blame on God. We lay the fault at His door.
Verse 31 calls us to come above the place where we are, the place of doubt, mistrust, fault-finding and blame. Against Almighty God, no less! Who are we to raise our wishes and wants up in the face of God, accusing Him of abandonment, of not caring, not bothering to notice us?
He calls us to let Him renew our strength. He has made the way–His way—for us. It is this: use your time in a God-ordained way to focus your attention on God, to wait on Him, to mount up (arise) using that renewed strength He has for usto come up higher, above the land of “poor me, I’m all alone, unseen, unloved, uncared for.”
Run! Don’t stay here moping—be strengthened and run! Run to the Rock whose ways are higher than our ways. Run on in life, knowing that in Him we will be freshly renewed again and again. In Him we’ll be able to walk and walk and walk on—not fainting along the way, but living strengthened.
Those who trust God, believe Him to be who He says He is, who He is, will turn to Him in their weakness and be empowered (eventually at least, even if we have to stop and correct wrong reaction at first), rather than accuse Him of not seeing, not being with them. To say such is to dispute who He is and take Him from His rightful place of authority and power. To turn to Him is to respectfully acknowledge who He is and give honor by trusting and relying on Him. By obeying and taking Him at His word. Trusting.
By doing so, we benefit. It is for our own personal good and our gain, this obeying and relying on Him. He is with you. He cares. Turn to Him.
It’s your choice. It’s your call. The God of the universe, the Creator, gives you the choice of running your own life or letting Him be in control. We can call the shots and be weak and unhappy, hosting our personal pity party and blaming God of not caring, not seeing our situation; or we can turn to Him and have our strength renewed, be able to run, able to rise above. Which will it be?

Poem written Sunday, March 11, 2012

COME UP HIGHER

“Come up higher!” God calls us to draw near
Leave the noises and distractions, His simple message is plain and clear
Read His Word, Heed His call, give thanks and believe—
Come up Higher, fully alive in Him—there’s so much to receive!

Come up higher. Do not focus on the bad;
The hard things in life, things that anger, confuse and make you sad
The things that you don’t understand—do not dwell on them so long
But rather give them all to Me; let me fill your heart with song.

Come up higher, why fight your way through life
Trying to force things to turn around—why live a life of strife?
My peace I’ve come to give you, My strength is for the weak
Lay aside your heavy burdens, Come to me – I’m all you seek.

Come up higher! There’s joy beyond compare
When you look to Me you’ll find refuge; My love with you I’ll share
I’ll wash away your sorrow, give guidance, peace and hope
You do not walk this road alone; let My Spirit help you cope.

Come up higher! It really is your choice
To struggle or live fully, follow the world or heed My voice.
Set your face like flint, keep the eyes of your heart on My Son
Veer not to the left or right from My truth so My will on earth can be done.

“Come up higher!” God calls to you and me
Let My Spirit lift you; come, child—live in Me and be free.
Rise above the cares of life and all that would ruin your day
Come up higher! Follow My voice, I Am the Truth, the Life, the Way.

Matthew 11:27-29 King James Version (KJV) 27All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. 28Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.

Pat Hunter