“The Lord longs to be gracious to you.” Isaiah 30:18
On December 31, the clock strikes midnight ushering in another New Year. Another 365 days to fan the flames of your unfilled hopes and dreams. A new beginning and gift full of promise. But you must accept it, unwrap it and use it. Not everybody does. Maybe you dread what the New Year holds; retirement, the empty nest, chronic illness, unemployment, life without a loved one. Well, God loves to take people at the end of their rope and set them on the road to peace, joy and victory. He is the expert at drying tears, calming fears, injecting courage into anxious hearts and removing the sting of old memories. He “makes all things new” Rev. 21:5. But He never leads you back, just forward.
Listen: “The Lord longs to be gracious to you.” What do you want to see happen this year? Does it include having your own business? Losing some weight? Reuniting with your family? Only you can complete the question, “What if I could…?” You alone know what makes your heart leap. Stephen Covey says, “Begin…with the image of the end of your life as your frame of reference…Each day will then contribute to the vision you have of your life as a whole.” Seek God. Determine your goals. Write them down, and then release the outcome to Him who “longs to be gracious to you.” To be gracious means “to show favor.” The desire of God’s heart is that you walk in His grace and favor every day of this year.
THE IMPACT OF EVERY WORD YOU SAY
I am sure you have heard someone say, “You are going to eat those words.” It may sound like a mere phrase to us but in reality we do eat our words. What we say not only affects others, but it also affects us. Words are wonderful when used in a proper way. They can encourage, edify and give confidence to the hearer. A right word spoken at the right time can actually be life changing. Proverbs 15:23 says, “A man has joy in making an apt answer, and a word spoken at the right moment” – how good it is.
Personally, I must bless with my words and not curse because whatever I say stands and happens the way I said it. One of the powers the Almighty God bestowed on me. We can literally increase our own joy by speaking right words. We can also upset ourselves by talking unnecessarily about our problems or things that have hurt us in relationships.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN WE SPEAK?
The words that come out of our mouth go into our own ears as well as other people’s, and then they drop down into our soul where they give us either joy or sadness, peace or upset, depending on the types of words we have spoken. God desires that our spirit be light and free so it can function properly, not heavy and oppressed. We can learn to choose our thoughts, to resist wrong ones and think on good, healthy, and right ones. I have often said, “Where the mind goes, the man follows.” And it could also be said that where the mind goes, the mouth follows!
PLAN TO SAY SOMETHING POSITIVE
Having a positive outlook on life and speaking positive words based on God’s Word is one of the most wholesome things we can do. You do not even have to be talking to someone to increase your joy with your words. The mere confession of good things is enough to cheer you up. When you get up in the morning, if there is something you need to attend to that day that you are not looking forward to, you can say, “I dread this day,” or you can say, “God will give me strength today to do whatever I need to do and to do it with joy.” Which of these two statements do you think would better prepare you for the day?
Anyone who wants to be healthy is careful to choose quality food that will provide good nutrition. If we want to be healthy in our soul and spirit, we should also choose to take in words that will build us up and increase our peace and joy. Fortunately, we do not have to wait for someone else to cheer us up! We can do it with own words by what we choose to talk about. When we understand the power of words and realize that we can choose what we think and speak, our lives can be transformed.
WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT IN 2013?
We talk a lot and quite often pay no attention to what we are saying, let alone think seriously about the impact of our words. If we are honest with ourselves, we may find that some of our bad moods are directly linked to our conversation. Even some of our problems can be linked to bad choices we make about what we say. I want to encourage you to take some time and think about the types of things you usually talk about. What kind of conversation do you enjoy and participate in?
We all have challenges in life, but we can make them better or worse by the way we talk about them. I am not suggesting at all that we deny reality, but we can choose what we talk about. Instead of feeding ourselves a steady diet of “bad news”, we should choose to read, watch and talk about good things. Your words may not be the cause of all your problems, but they can cause a lot of them and they should be given a good deal of consideration when we are looking for answers to the problems we encounter in life.
I believe there are many good things happening in the world and there is probably more good than bad, but the evil is magnified in a way that often seems overwhelming. Turn on any news magazine and you will find it filled with reports of murder, theft, wars, famine and all kinds of horribly tragic events. One thing is for sure, speaking negatively could hurt you and speaking positively never will, so why not go with the positive and see what kind of results you get?