A WORD FAST

Ahhh, let me hear you say “outstanding!”  Or tickle my ear with “that sounds marvelous!” Increase my joy by replying “what fun!” Fascinate me by your interest in the tale I told. “What a blessing that must have been!”  “We have two ears, and one mouth….let us listen more, and speak more about “their” positive impact, “their” value, and less about me, me, me. Why not ask more questions, and listen intently? Let us not minimize “their” experience with one of our own. Simply remark on how you perceive the potential THEY have to be a mighty force, a great  blessing to others!  The Holy Spirit dwells within each believer. He is just waiting to be asked to take hold of our tongues so that we can speak more blessings!  “Are you listening to what the Spirit is saying?”  We are exhorted to “LISTEN” many times in God’s Word. Examine yourself: Does the content of my mind and heart show up on my face as a smile or a scowl?  Are you baffled by doors that have been closed to you? Do people seek to be around you? Are you a light?  Has your spirit ever been convicted as to whether your complaining pleases God?  Do you ever stop to consider IF your grumbling about the traffic, about government, or about people in authority…IF it actually benefits anyone? Do you simply voice whatever runs through your mind without the filter of considering God’s purpose? Do you resist changing your pattern of thinking and speaking?  Why? Are your thoughts superior to God’s? While observing God’s beloved people, are you judging them by asking “Why would anybody say that, or do that?” As Jesus hears every thought, if we remain surrendered to the Holy Spirit, He might respond “Only God knows the motives of man’s heart and that we all fall short and need grace.”  Are you easily irritated by perpetually optimistic people? Does your level of contentment depend on who wins the game, the race, the election?  Do you grumble when plans change? Do you automatically issue mercy because you have received much?  Do you seek opportunities to encourage? Do you look for what is GOOD in your spouse, in the White House, the church and speak it? Are you quick to inject a compliment or a complaint? Are you inclined to defend your ways, your thoughts, your actions, your opinions with “they deserve it” or “wisdom allows us to discern and pass judgment?  Do you listen with both ears and an open mind?  Are you quick to point out the good, the better way when in the midst of chaos? Can you admit that you miss the moment in front of you as you reminisce about the way it used to be?  Will you agree or deny the scripture that paints the picture of a man’s stinking thinking? “What comes out of a man is what defiles a man.” Mark 7:20-23  For our heavenly Father is fully aware of our secret criticisms. Inside every Christian, the Holy Spirit abides, and He is there to help us be purified of all that defiles us. Can you agree that sarcastic humor is just as wicked, or as sinful as profanity or murder?  It is foolishness to deceive ourselves… and pride fully deny… that a critical spirit is not of God.   Lord, in the name of Jesus,  help us heed Your calling for our hearts to be transformed as we put on the mind of Christ.  Wash our minds and uproot  the deep pockets of judgment that reside in our hearts.   Give us eyes to see what You see in others. A living hope, a holy restoration and the ongoing sanctification through the completed work of our Lord Jesus.  Help us to look and find the good in every situation, in each encounter You set before us.  Help us to control our tongues and speak words that will edify and encourage those You place in our path.  “Whoever slanders their neighbor in secret, I will put to silence; whoever has haughty eyes and a proud heart, I will not tolerate.” Psalm 101:5  To the glory of God, and for His good purpose, as we relate to our brothers and sisters in Christ, it is vitally important that we become a love covering for another believers inappropriate actions or words.  1 Peter 4:8 “Above all, love each other images (1)deeply, because LOVE covers a multitude of sins”  This truth instructs us to recognize that if we gossip about a wrong choice, or a worldly way in another, we are exposing faults and uncovering them. When we tear down instead of lift up, we are choosing to sin against God’s will that we love one another, forgive one another, and issue grace to one another…just as He loves, forgives and issues grace and mercy to us….daily. “For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” Matthew 7:2   A dysfunctional Christian justifies his complaining, sarcastic humor, negativity and criticisms.  Jesus taught that there is no middle ground between the kingdom of heaven and the world we live in. “Whoever is not with Me is against Me, and whoever does not gather with Me scatters.” Matthew 12:30  Our judgments’ produce misery and the 71aa7ad5cf7855d0fcb90b60e81a4bdcchronic critic reaps what he sows.  “Yet I will show you a more excellent way” 1 Corinthians 12:31  The polar opposite of a life spent in judgment, criticism, sarcasm and bitterness is a life filled with complete joy and contentment.  “We know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28 The NEW creation, is NOT a negative person, but a positive, joy filled, peaceful person who identifies with the freedom of Christ Paul had while in prison.  We are either praising God in all circumstances, or we are whining and complaining!  To live “in Me” as I am “in you” is to live in gratitude and contentment.  “Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks, for this is the WILL of GOD in Christ Jesus concerning you.” 1 Thess 5:16  Choose to look for whatever is noble, noteworthy or good in every situation, everyday. Make healthy choices that will honor God and your relationships.  Intentionally Choose to draw people to the Love, the Light and the Joy that lives inside you.  Choose to rehearse or filter every thought before it exits your lips. Choose words to inspire, uplift, encourage and transform. Choose words that cause the hearing face to light up. Choose words that lead to smiles. 889579bbd149425ddd5d8c46ca932e59We cannot accomplish fasting on negative, pessimistic thinking and broadcasting without our indwelt Holy Helper.  Lord help us hold our tongue.  Help us listen with genuine interest and not just wait for a pause just so we can share our experiences.  Help us intentionally choose words that will uplift, acknowledge, and encourage.  Help us glorify Your plan for the world as we speak Kingdom language. Forgive us for any secretly held thoughts of criticism, judgment, malice or unforgiveness.  Amen —- “The Forty-Day Word Fast” by Tim Cameron

One thought on “A WORD FAST

  1. A blogger on the subject of Word wrote “What does a word represent? When we think of a word, we generate a concept in our mind. When we speak a word to someone else we compel whoever is listening to generate the concept they associate with that word in their mind. Therefore, when we translate words from one language to another, finding the best match between the words in the source language and the target language involves finding the word or phrase that correctly portrays the desired concept in the mind of the reader.

    Unfortunately, even if the translator well understands both the source and target languages, sometimes there isn’t a good word match. Sometimes, in the case of a language that has not been spoken for a long time, scholars have to work quite diligently to understand what concepts the words in the source language were meant to generate in the minds of the people who spoke that language. So it is we get translations that are mostly the same, but some differ significantly.”

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