Devotional: July 3, 2020
Watch your step when you enter God’s house
Enter to learn. That’s far better than mindlessly offering a sacrifice.
Doing more harm than good.
Don’t shoot off your mouth, or speak before you think.
Don’t be too quick to tell God what you think he wants to hear.
God’s in charge, not you – less you speak, the better.
Overwork makes for restless sleep.
Overtalk shows you up as a fool.
When you tell God you’ll do something, do it – now
God takes no pleasure in foolish gabble. Vow it, then do it.
Far better not to vow in the first place than to vow and not pay up.
Don’t let your mouth make a total sinner of you.
When called to account, you won’t get by with “Sorry you didn’t mean it”.
Why risk provoking God to angry relationships?
But against all illusion and fantasy and empty talk
There’s always this rock foundation: Fear God!
Ecclesiastes 5: 1-7 The Message
Word’s matter. When our boys first learned to talk, we hung on every new word they said. Jeana use to roll her eyes that the first words were usually “Da-da!” Nonetheless, we were overjoyed to hear every new word spoken by our children.
God is the same way. He wants to hear our words, but He wants us to realize that our words matter to him. Our words matter to other people as well. Sometimes no words are also important. Often, it seems like filling silence with unnecessary “gabble” is more comfortable. Silence feels awkward to some people. Yet silence is also an opportunity to listen.
I have had conversations with people, where they were so busy thinking about upcoming response that I could tell that they hadn’t really listened to what I was saying. I love the line, “overtalk shows you for a fool”. None of us ever want to appear foolish. Yet that can be exactly how we appear when we don’t take the time to listen to others, and especially to God.
I think that there are some who think they are given a free pass by the excuse “I didn’t really mean what I said”. Speaking before one thinks can sometimes be a remedy for disaster. Replaying a conversation back in your mind later can lead you to wonder why you said what you said. God is very clear that he wants us to choose the words we speak wisely. When we say the first thing that pops into our mind, we may not have taken that necessary breath, and paused, in order to offer a thoughtful response.
When we enter God’s house, and when we enter other’s homes, may we show the listening love that God has asked us to offer. We don’t always have to be the first to answer, or fill what may feel like the void of silence. Take care to what you say, and how you speak. God is listening…
Lord, may the words of our mouths, and the meditations of our hearts, be acceptable to you. Help us to be aware of the ability we have to share your good news, for it can be on the tip of our tongue. Help us to use our words as a soothing balm, and not to add insult to injury. Give us the patience to listen to, and to learn from you.
We pray this prayer in your most Holy Name,