Today I want to explore a little about our words, the language we use, the heart behind it and how keeping your head is not just about protecting yourself but protecting others.
My husband, Ben has been working really hard this week on his vision talk for Ivy Kingsway as well as his final essay of the year for WTC (his part-time theology degree course). Essay weeks are always a crazy one for us as the completion of an essay takes up every remaining minute in a week. It is fantastic to see him thriving and loving studying theology and I wouldn’t want him to stop, but there is an unfortunate understanding in our house that essay week is a write off for family time. Disappointingly, essay week can bring out the Queen of Hearts in me.
Emotions like anger are funny things and can take over very speedily if you let them (and no I’m not pregnant!) Earlier this week I let that anger and frustration out. It all got too much and I really snapped at my eldest son. As I looked at my boy’s fearful face after a speedy & unnecessarily harsh response it completely broke my heart. I need to get better at keeping my head… taking a moment… just to breathe. But there must also be more I can do to help prevent this from happening, and ways to stop when I feel the old red monarch rise up inside.
“Set a guard over my mouth, Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips.” (Psalm 141:3)
We’re into drama as a generation – there’s a whole movie genre dedicated to it. We are entertained by seeing people fight, row & ultimately become wounded in some way by the words they’ve spoken or that have been spoken over them. For me, it’s ‘Made In Chelsea‘ or ‘Grey’s Anatomy‘ but for others it could be an intense action movie or high school rom-com. Why do we like the drama? Maybe it is because watching people fly off the handle makes us feel better about ourselves, because surely we’re not that bad!? The Bible says: “What you say flows from what is in your heart.” (Luke 6:45). Words are vessels for power. How’s my mouth been this week, how’s my heart? Seemingly, not too great!
“Changing the way you talk will change your heart.” Joyce Meyer
This challenge is a little bit of a chicken and egg situation though, as we need to keep both mouth and heart in check because they directly impact each other. If my mouth speaks words of life then that will affect my heart – and if my heart is aligned with Jesus’ then that will have a direct impact on the words I speak.
So how do we balance these?
- Speak the language of our Creator, God. He made us in His image and loves us no matter what; whether we return that love or not. He sees us as His children and says we are beautiful, strong, courageous, capable of anything. Are we reading, believing and speaking His life giving words or do we ?
- Be grateful. We say this to children, but do we say it over ourselves? Are we full of thanks? For our families, our spouses, our work, our homes, our friends? When we start believing and speaking out our thanks we can change the condition of our heart.
- Read & recite until it goes in. If you’re struggling with something; anger, unforgiveness, pain, insecurity… speaking a better word over your situation, God’s truth can literally be life changing.
- Spend time with the one who seeks out your heart. Talk to God, read His word, stick on some worship music and just be. He’s in the business of mending hearts!
I guess what my challenge to myself this week is to keep my head… and my heart!