The Power of Words, Part 2
Finally, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me – put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
We all know someone who prides herself on “speaking her mind.” Sadly, this person often leaves a trail of life-taking hurt. Even sadder, is that this person typically has a lot of wisdom that could encourage others but no one can hear past the prideful, arrogant, “telling it like it is” life-taking words. If you are accustomed to speaking whatever comes to mind without any filters, Paul’s questions should stop you in your tracks. But this passage is not just for the person who “speaks her mind” without any filters. What about the gossip?
Inspirational speaker and author of Life, the Truth, and Being Free, Steve Maraboli, asks this question: “How would your life be different if…You walked away from gossip and verbal defamation? Let today be the day…You speak only the good you know of other people and encourage others to do the same.”
I fear that some of us would have nothing to talk about if we could not gossip. Paul outlines a way to guard our speech that results in a priceless gift. Paul answer to Mr. Maraboli’s question is in Today’s Treasure Bible verse. When we walk away from gossip because we desire to be a reflection of our Savior, a priceless gift comes from such discipline: the peace of God. Just as an out of control tongue destroys the speaker, asking the questions in Today’s Treasure Bible verse, in response to the grace we experience in Jesus, leads to peace in the heart of the speaker. As peace grows in your heart, it will flow over into the lives of those you are encouraging. That’s life-giving.
LIFE GIVING ENCOURAGEMENT
Before you get out of bed, think about these questions in the context of the tasks before you. Think about the people who will cross your path and how you will practice the disciplines of this passage. If you have had no filters on your speech, if you believe you should just say whatever you think, this assignment will be one of the hardest for you to take on. But ask the Lord to nudge you every time you are ready to speak before thinking. Ask Him to give you an opportunity today for your words to be life-giving rather than life-taking.
STORE UP MORE TREASURES
At some point in our lives, we or someone we know will go through great suffering. I encourage you to go the MARKINC website and listen to the Breast Cancer audio resource so that you can store up treasures of encouragement for the next rainy day in your life or someone else's. Here is a summary and teaser of this resource:
Breast cancer. The very words are terrifying. The first thing Sharon did when she heard that diagnosis was to find a woman who had already traveled through the foreign land of cancer. As Sharon say, "I needed a guide - someone to help me navigate the maze of unknown terrain." It is Sharon's hope that through this interview she and her husband Chuck can come alongside you as you walk this new pathway. In this interview, you'll hear some practical ways to take the terror out of the word "cancer" and how to face your journey with hope and courage. It is Chuck and Sharon's prayer that this message will be one more tool that equips you for the days ahead.