Tuesday, July 15, 2008

People watching and a few other things

First off, I am at Panera studying and I am so A.D.D. that I seriously have a hard time concentrating. These men next to me have a total right to be in this place and talk...and yet I am so bored TO DEATH with their conversation. Then, homeboy across the way...if he says oh my G-d! one more time I am going to have to start singing some praise up in Panera so the rocks won't have to cry out.

Thankfully, Rod rarely reads my blog so I am about to tell on myself. I currently have an addiction to E.L. Fudge cookies. You know....the little elves with the chocolate in the middle. That is usually what I eat all day. I have had to smuggle the cookies into the house so he doesn't catch me. I have been Little Debbie free for months now btw. Soooo I had to order a bagel "to go" so I can be here and study.

So to my point:
If we are true bible believers and we say that God's word is the absolute authority, why do we have such a hard time believing and having that belief show up in how we act? I had to ask myself that this morning. I am very sanguine and if you know me you will testify to that. I talk a lot and that can be bad. If I feel like I need to make someone feel welcomed I talk and talk if they aren't saying anything. I HATE forced or fake conversation so I can be to real sometimes and not hold back as much as I should. This is forever something that I am going to the Lord over. A certain area of weakness I have is with my family. It is so easy for me to let my guard down, maybe talk about or criticize others and etc. So this morning I read this in the amplified version (Please take a minute to pray and ask the Holy Spirit to speak to you with these verses):

Ephesians 4:29-31
29Let no foul or polluting language, nor evil word nor unwholesome or worthless talk [ever] come out of your mouth, but only such [speech] as is good and beneficial to the spiritual progress of others, as is fitting to the need and the occasion, that it may be a blessing and give grace (God's favor) to those who hear it.

30And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God [do not offend or vex or sadden Him], by Whom you were sealed (marked, branded as God's own, secured) for the day of redemption (of final deliverance through Christ from evil and the consequences of sin).

31Let all bitterness and indignation and wrath (passion, rage, bad temper) and resentment (anger, animosity) and quarreling (brawling, clamor, contention) and slander (evil-speaking, abusive or blasphemous language) be banished from you, with all malice (spite, ill will, or baseness of any kind).

There is a park near me that Morgan and I go to and it has a little lake. As you walk over a bridge you will see a dried up, green, foul, polluted section of the lake. It just sits there stagnant. Our mouths of course are a reflection of our hearts. That is how I try to gauge what the state of someones soul is, what I mean as whether or not they know Christ. It doesn't take long to hear someones heart by what flows out of their mouth. So, what about me? How do I reflect Christ with my conversation. Is my talk foul, unwholesome, unproductive, idle, polluted? Is it worthless chatter that just leads to gossip or ungodliness? Am I building others up? Speaking the truth in love? Being honest? Do I point people to God's word for counsel? These are all questions that I am asking myself this morning. I am praying that God will touch my mouth and allow me to be penetrated so much with the word that my talk would be pleasing to the One that I must give an account to.

When God appointed Jeremiah to be a prophet to the nations he was about 20 years old. The same age as King Josiah who made a lot of good reforms to Judah. Josiah became king when he was 8 years old because his father was assassinated. So him and Jeremiah would have been about the same age. The book of the law was found during the time of Josiah's ministry. Usually, as you know the king and the High Priest were the only ones who had a copy of the Book of the Law. God's word was neglected as Judah moved away from God, just as we move away from God we begin to neglect His words and our hearts move from Him and turn toward idols. Sometimes we feel that we can never be restored to the fellowship we once had once we have moved away from God. That is a lie from the pit of hell! Cleaning up our mouths or any true revival is going to come for us through a steady dose of God's word and taking Him at His word. He is so good and I regret so much the times that I have moved away from God to follow my own sinful desires. It left me nothing but shame and regret. Over and over in Deuteronomy you will see God telling His people to purge the evil from among them. You will also see in James that our tongues are evil and full of deadly poison (James 3:6, 8). We have got to repent and have some evil purged from our lives as well. God wants to use us as an instrument of blessing and He wants to have His word in our hearts and on our lips. It was my prayer this morning that He would touch my mouth and that I would speak His words. That I would repent of things that I have said and just seek His heart and face. The fact is God is NOT going to unleash His power when we are blessing Him but cursing those made in His image. Fresh water and salt water can't flow from the same source. Oh that the Lord would heal us that He would heal me and that my conversation would be centered on Him.

Jeremiah 1:6-9
"Ah, Sovereign LORD," I said, "I do not know how to speak; I am only a child."

7 But the LORD said to me, "Do not say, 'I am only a child.' You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you. 8 Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you and will rescue you," declares the LORD.

9 Then the LORD reached out his hand and touched my mouth and said to me, "Now, I have put my words in your mouth.

I am seriously praying for everyone that reads this as well that our conversation would be that of Colossians 4:6
Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.

If you made it this far...have a blessed day. I have to stop because I have a tendency to go on and on!! I am giving Him some praise up in Panera! Let's have mouths consecrated to Him so that we may be different, set apart, and so the rocks won't have to cry out on our behalf.

ps I hope this makes some sense. I was typing and listening to praise music at the same time.

With much love! Blessed be Your Name Lord!!!


StaceyStace said...

Jenny, this is something that I am particularly dealing with today! Thank you for sharing these verses. The anger and bitterness I have collected over the past few years concerning my ex husband is becoming so evident to me now. I am having to surrender my tongue to the Lord and pray for Him to deliver me from the bitterness that is causing my tongue be venomous.

BethAnne said...

Girl, I soooooo wish we could get together and talk each other's ears off at Panera. I could have totally written this whole post....I tend to talk a lot as well and I also tend to give away a little too much info sometimes.....

Bev Brandon said...

Keep asking those questions...
they are good ones...
and oh my, Jenny Hope,
I just love you SO MUCH
I love what you wrestle with
a heart that so wants to be
fully A. L. I. V. E.
and walk in His fullness of life
Romans 6
but we have to walk through
Romans 7
to get there
and you do
and you are
You encourage me so deeply!
Love your heart!!!!

Sherry said...

Jenny, I didn't read this cause I knew my ADD would kick in and I would forget what I came to do! Today I was reading in 2 Cor and after I read this, I thought of you:

You yourselves are our letter of recommendation...and you show that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God...
Now, the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

It's 2 Cor chapter 3 the first part of 2 & 3 and 17. God just immediately laid you on my heart after I read it. Those specific verses just kinda lept off the page. And of course by "us", I do not mean me. I ain't no Paul, and surely not in light of you. Just so we're on the same page... :) But I know how much we all need to hear we are free -- Glory to God!

Michelle said...

I know you don't know me, but I have read your blog often from finding it on Beth Moore's blog. I have been so encouraged by the truths you share, and the transparency by which you share them. I just wanted to share that with you today. The Lord laid you on my heart, and I wanted to remind you that God uses you in big ways!

Fran said...

Excellent Jenny excellent!!

I hope our day today reflects who we are in Christ and everything that flows out of our mouths is pleasing and honoring.

Boy do I need that.

ocean mommy said...

I can't wait to talk to you!!! I had a very similar conversation with my oldest daughter recently. We were talking about the power of our words and how they can bring life or death....LOVE THIS POST!!!

I'm glad you were having church in Panera!!! :)


jennyhope said...

I just want to tell you how sweet you all are and how you must have known that I needed the encouragement today.

My grandmother had a stroke last night so I was at the hospital this morning...she seems to be doing good.

I have just been in a place where I needed the encouragement. Thank you!!

mandy said...

ok. so thanks.
now i have to go find me some chocolate to get through this craving!