God has given us free will, the power to choose, but in His goodness, He gave us a powerful hint and that is to CHOOSE LIFE!
“Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would CHOOSE LIFE, so that you and your descendants might live!” (Deuteronomy 30:19 NLT)
We live in a world where words are profusely spoken without consideration. Just look around, check your social media, listen to the news or even just spend a few minutes with those around you, all you hear are words, words, words, words, words that more often than not don’t mean much to the one who is talking. Words become cheap when spoken without compassion and conviction. Words become valueless when spoken without substance.
We live in an opinionated world where everyone speaks of his own mind and if we don’t know the Word of God, giving it full authority to govern our lives, then we get easily tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of their opinions. Our gateways, eyes to see and ears to hear, are always open to the influence of those around us who will try to trick us with lies so clever that sound like the truth. We are susceptible to the words of the ones who themselves are deceived. It’s like a blind man leading the blind. What is so rampant nowadays is when the majority believes, it becomes “right!”. If we are not anchored on His word, then we allow ourselves to be affected by someone else’s word. Let us guard our hearts with all diligence. Let’s watch what we allow to enter in to our hearts for out of it flows issues of life. It can easily be perceived as “garbage in, garbage out”; “life-giving words in, abundant life out!” We choose!
Take notice and be aware of the conversations that we are involved in. Many times words released are overpowering each other, pushing and conniving who is more knowledgeable and powerful. When this happens, observe yourself how you respond to them. Listen to yourself when you speak, “did my words give value to those around me or am I like a clanging cymbal trying to impress those around me?” The intents of our hearts matter for the Lord only looks at our hearts and not the outer expressions of man.
We all are a work in progress and all because God loves us so much to stay the way we are, He gave us His word to be the lamp upon our feet and the light unto our path. He gave us Holy Spirit to illumine the Word that we are meditating on that it may be revealed in our hearts and cause us to make a difference to those around us when we speak. Christ gave His church the gifts, namely, the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers and their responsibility is to equip us and build us up. He gave us His grace to empower us to speak what He calls us to speak.
One evening I was talking to a family of three and as I was listening to their conversation, two of them were throwing accusations and putting pressure on the other one. They were pointing out mistakes in her decisions up to such a point where the cornered member of the family almost raised her voice in defense. Silently, I inquired of the Lord, “what does love look like in here?” Before I knew it, I was talking to the defenseless one straight into her eyes, and then she asked me, “do you know my story?” I simply answered, “NO”. And so I asked her and gave her my full attention. It may have taken a couple of hours to listen but in my heart I so believed that it was the only way to silence the two who were accusing her. When we allow our hearts to be open, when we choose to give time and have the willingness to understand, it changes the atmosphere of where we are. We give room to the accused to give her story without judgment. When everything was said and done, peace settled in our hearts and the night ended gracefully well. That was what love looked like at that very moment.
“Be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry.” Proverbs 12:18
Sometimes we speak faster than we think not knowing that we have already blessed or wounded the one in front of us which unknowingly affects us. We have to always be reminded of “what we give will be given back to us and much more”. We are called to protect and cover what looks like shame to others. That’s what love does. It covers a multitude of sins. We are postured to encourage and empower that their shame will no longer get hold of them when we embrace who they truly are in the love of Christ. We speak the word of God upon their lives for only the His words are spirit and they are life and health to those who listen and receive them.
“Words kill, words give life; they’re either poison or fruit — you choose.” (Proverbs 18:21 MSG)
To control our tongue is next to impossible without our mighty HELPER, Holy Spirit. It is He Who helps us bridle our tongue for it is a powerful part of our body though it may seem small but it sets the direction of our lives.
“We can make a large horse go wherever we want by means of a small bit in its mouth. And a small rudder makes a huge ship turn wherever the pilot chooses to go, even though the winds are strong. In the same way, the tongue is a small thing that makes grand speeches. But a tiny spark can set a great forest on fire. And among all the parts of the body, the tongue is a flame of fire. It is a whole world of wickedness, corrupting your entire body. It can set your whole life on fire, for it is set on fire by hell itself.” (James 3:3-6 NLT)
Thank God for Holy Spirit for it is He Who enables and graces us to speak life-giving words that bring hope not just to ourselves but to the one who hears us. It is He Who unveils revelations into our hearts as we meditate the Word day and night which is the implanted Word of God revealed before us that saves our minds, wills and emotions.
The secret is still in the secret place of His presence where our conversations and fellowship with Him affect and influence our own thoughts, words, declarations, expectations and actions.
“So get rid of all uncleanness and the rampant outgrowth of wickedness, and in a humble (gentle, modest) spirit RECEIVE and WELCOME the Word which IMPLANTED and ROOTED [in your hearts] contains the power to save your souls.” (James 1:21 AMPC)
To choose life is to speak life and live it to its utmost, not by might nor by power, but by the Spirit of God. Our words of life come when we are constantly and consistently connected to the One Who is the Word Himself, Jesus Christ. Intimacy with Him allows our own words to be aligned and influenced by His words and he who has the Son has LIFE! As we have chosen HIM, we have chosen LIFE!