Monday Morning Devotion-October 14, 2019
By the word of the Lord, were the heavens made, their starry host, by the breath of his mouth. Psalm 33:6
In looking for just the right devotional idea each week there is no set way to do it.
Sometimes a title will just pop into my head. When that happens there is no doubt this one
comes from the Lord and it is the one to use. Of course, it would be nice if a scripture came ready made with it. Sometimes it does, but not always.
Some weeks, I will come across a devotional idea as I'm reading (I read a lot so that is a frequent occurrence.) I might get an idea from the sermon I heard that week in church.
Then there are weeks like this one when I come to my writing deadline without a single idea of what to write about. Actually, it's even more of a challenge this week because I normally write the devotion on Thursday, for next Monday, and today is Friday°oops!
So, what I usually decide to do in that case is pray first and scramble second. I go to my bookcase and start thumbing through books looking for the best idea for this week's devotion. Looking through my books by John Ortberg, Joel Osteen, Billy Graham, Joyce Meyer, Mark Batterson, Charles Stanley, et al., I am sure to find a gem of an idea. And sure enough I did.
It was a book called: "Monday Morning Devotions" by Jim Crosby. (pardon the shameless self-promotion) but I just opened it to the first chapter and found an idea. It was the first devotion of the first book I have written, so it has a special place in my list of favorites. It is called; "What's in a Word."
With your permission let me share some of the thoughts the Lord placed in my mind back in 2002, 17 years ago.
"Words are so common to our existence we hardly give a second thought to most of the things we say. Yet, words are important determinants of actions. What we say not only affects what we do, but how we are perceived. What we say can impact the spirit of the moment, but also can change feelings for a lifetime.
A study made of the volume of words spoken, revealed that many women speak an average of up to 25,000 words a day and many men generally use 12,500 words. While the accuracy of that count could be questioned (especially since the researcher had not met my granddaughter Ellee) it does point out that discrepancies in communications exist.
If one person talks twice as much as the other in a conversation, there is potential for a breakdown in communications. You can't generalize and say that women do most of the talking because each gender has members who are better listeners than others.
However, the main thing to take from this study is the consequences of how we talk to others. Communications must meet the needs of both parties. Differences stemming from a lack of understanding can be a byproduct of our failure to discuss matters. So, it is necessary to communicate and to select our words wisely.
Choosing the proper words is important because we often think another person knows how we feel about a subject, but unless we verbalize our thoughts, they could be off on a different wavelength.
We have all had the experience of saying something that we regret. After the words have escaped our lips, we instantly wish we could take them back. They seem to take on a life of their own. They are no longer mere words, but missiles finding a target and lodging in the hearts and minds of other people.
Words are very important because they make our thoughts public. Your words become windows to your thinking. Combined with your actions these are the things others use to form their opinion of you.
On the other hand, saying a kind word to someone really doesn't cost you anything. It is a choice you make. You can say something positive, negative, or say nothing at all.
A man finds joy in giving an apt reply. And how good is a timely word.
The right word at the right time can make a world of difference. This was proven in the
beginning of the world:
Genesis 3:3 °and God said, 'Let there be light.' Then God gave the light a name. He called the light---day. And the dark he called---night.
Most of us have known people who, in their own minds, felt like the word was mightier than the deed. They say things that make them appear to be Mr. Nice Guy or Ms. Nice Gal, but that's all it is---talk. Their words never evolve into action, but when they utter them, everyone comments about how nice and considerate they are.
To learn the true significance of words, look at John 1:1:
In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning.
So, with that kind of importance attached to this term, perhaps our words should be delivered with more care and concern.
An anonymous prayer goes: "Lord let my words be sweet as honey, for I may have to eat them in the morning."
Proverbs 25:11 paints a picture of using the right words.
A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.
Words can be beautiful things when spoken properly, no matter the extent of a person's vocabulary. Words can be uplifting, encouraging, a call to positive action. Or they can be destructive, damaging, action-destroyers.
It's your choice. Choose wisely. Remember as Proverbs 24:26 points out:
A word wisely spoken is like a kiss on the lips.
Prayer: Lord thank you for the ability to communicate through words. Help us to share them wisely with others for comfort, love and support. Amen!