"Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth,
but what is good for necessary edification,
that it may impart grace to the hearers."
Eph 4:29 NKJV
When I was a
It's not that I had a potty mouth or that I let anger dictate my sentence structure (much). It was more that I have this slightly twisted, dry, highly sarcastic sense of humor.
I come from a long line of Quick-Wit... Sarcasm drips thick from our Family Tree. We wear that 'badge' with honor and pride. But I learned early on - partly from trial and error, and partly because I really am soft-hearted and loving... I learned how to be sarcastic while not (usually) cutting anyone down! Still - this verse brought a little conviction and a lot of condemnation.
I spent more than a few years biting my tongue (not entirely a bad thing) and trying to change or hide who I really am (always a bad thing!). I held up the mask of "Good Christian" while not saying a word (but still cracking myself up under my breath!)
Now... I don't have a uber colorful vocabulary. I can swear like a sailor(ish?) but that is not how we roll. Swearing is not common in this house, nor is it our fall back way of describing - well - anything... but it does happen once in awhile.
With that said, I gotta tell ya - I read this verse a little differently now... It's not limited to the occasional curse word or rant... oh no... it is harder than that! When I read this verse now, I think back over those calm conversations as well as the confrontations. I think of the everyday tape that is on repeat - whether or not I speak it out loud or just let it play in my own head. Are those things spoken corrupt? Are they damaging? Do they impart grace to the hearers?
We purposed as young parents to Speak Life to our girlie. I wanted to raise her in an environment where she knew beyond the shadow of a doubt that she is loved and accepted and that we think she is awesome. Not a false sense of self-esteem - but 'she is awesome' as in God made her that way... like He made all of us to be.
Whether it be with our kids, family, friends, pastors (let's be real, now!) or neighbors... it's EASIER to point out what is wrong; what is lacking. Anyone can spot the dirt... but I believe we are called to bring out the treasure!
Speak Life... tell them what they are doing RIGHT... when we do this, each word really can be a gift!
Here the verse is in The Message:
"Watch the way you talk.
Let nothing foul or dirty
come out of your mouth.
Say only what helps,
each word a gift."
"It's in your Words... how they speak life and stir up hope and wrap up in safety the hearts of those around you... how they speak truth in love, gently - not to wound, but to woo... to help birth dreams and grow hope...It's in how you Act... in the grocery store, on the phone, in the car... at home, at work, at church...It's in how you Fess Up and Live Real and Ask Forgiveness for the times when how you acted was not really the kind of Beacon of light you were hoping to be!You see... to Shine On - you must be willing to be seen... on the good days and on those not so good days! The world doesn't need to see Pharisees... they are looking for honesty and messy truth... they are hungry for the authentic... for the real and the less than perfect! We want to be Jesus with skin on... radiant and full of grace..."
We have purposed to live our lives this way! We are far from perfect, and we blow it (often) - but we don't deny or hide anymore... we live our life (sarcastic humor and all) out in the open... and we look for ways to Shine.
Which brings us to our photo for #BehindTheScenes. This was taken when we were vacationing in the Spring and were roaming around Redding, CA. We were hoping that our girlie and her friend would have words spoken over them in a way that would impact them as they neared graduation and All the Things Changing... however instead of them getting prayed for... well - this happened:
After walking around the SunDial Bridge for awhile, this woman approached the girls and asked if they were from a local church there. (Bethel) She said that they 'look like Bethel people... you look really happy. Would you pray for me?"
And... as the
Instead of receiving a word... they gifted some words. They prayed for this stranger in search of answers and offered her encouragement and they imparted grace!
And really... is this not what we are all hoping for: words of encouragement... words full of grace?
We want what comes out of our mouths to be imparting good...
we want them to be a gift to all who hear our voice!
We want all those who hear our voice...
to hear Your Heart!
Help us, Holy Spirit, to hold our tongues...
Partner with us to tame not only our tongues
but our thoughts, as well!
Help us to impart Grace...
to make each word
In Jesus Name!
Joining in today with these lovely Link Up's: