I would like to give you a quick heads up so you can be prepared for this weekend.
Sunday, when we gather for worship – to sing about and learn more about love – unbelievable as it may sound, there will be some murderers in the room.
It will be hard to tell exactly who they are – they look exactly like you and me – but they will have all used the same weapon to kill (or at least cripple) their victims. Their weapon of choice? Words.
“Okay, Pastor Jim, a little overdramatic, don’t you think?”
No, I sure don’t. I have seen some of the victims up close and what happened to them was brutal, verging on inhumane. Solomon wasn’t kidding when he told us, “The tongue holds the power of life and death.” And we get to choose every day whether we will impart death or life (love) to another person.
There’s that choice thing again. We have already learned that love is a choice. Loving with our words is also a choice – but it may not be just a decision that is limited to the selection of words. Jesus told us that “out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks.” It may well be that the first step to loving with our words is to clean up what’s in our heart so the love of Christ can fill us and overflow from our lips.
This Sunday’s message is entitled, “Loving with Your Words.” In preparation for our time of study, let me encourage you to read the following verses:
- Proverbs 18:21 – Solomon says the tongue holds the power of life and death
- James 3:1-8 – James tells us that if our tongue is out of control, we are out of control
- Matthew 12:34 – Jesus explains that words are the indicator of what is in our hearts
- James 3:9-12 – James illustrates by reminding us that fresh water and salt water cannot flow from the same spring
So what might “loving with our words” look like:
- Ephesians 4:15 – the words will be honest and truthful
- Ephesians 4:26-27 – the words will be careful
- Ephesians 4:29 – the words will be building and meet needs
“May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight” (Psalm 19:14)
A simple prayer with powerful impact – it will always result in loving with our words.
P.S. The murderers – the ones that look exactly like you and me – well, they may actually be you and me…