Hello, Cougar Family!
"What in the ham sandwich!" my friend Matt exclaimed! I burst out laughing because I had never heard that saying in my entire life! I laugh every time he says it because it's hilarious for some reason...and now I'm laughing as I type it out! 😂
Ok, where am I going with this you may ask? Words...aren't they great! Unless of course they're meant to hurt, discipline, or discourage, then they aren't so great.
Maybe powerful is a better adjective. Words are powerful! They can make you laugh, or cry, or think, or get angry, slow you down, or motivate you.
Levi talks about words in chapter five of "I Declare War." I love the whole chapter because it speaks to me...it's funny how words can do that! He opens up completely about his love for words and how he used words to harm for a long time, and sometimes still does. He confesses that when he hurls hurtful words, he wishes he could stop them as they fly through the air because he is immediately filled with regret. Does that resonate with you at all? It sure does me!
This was such a fitting chapter to read this morning. Do you know why? Because of the two day forecast for RAIN! Now don't get me wrong, I love rain on most ordinary days...but on Quarantine Days...not so much! To top it off, it's a little chilly outside, so I can't work from my comfy makeshift porch office looking over into the woods. That little spot has made this whole thing enjoyable, but it's not in the cards for today, so the confinement is about to get real! I'm just anticipating it now...there may be words!
I can foretell the future, folks. Today I'm probably gonna say a few, "What in the ham sandwiches!" Maybe you will, too, or maybe you did last week. Maybe it won't be that exact phrase, because I'm sure you have your favorites. Maybe it will be nicer, or less sarcastic, or harsher, or uglier. The point is that eventually, if not already, you may use your words to express your feelings.
So, is this a bad thing? Well, it depends. It depends on how you intend to use your words, because all your words matter.
Levi shares that the average person says 16,000 words per day. Those are just the words you speak to others, and then you have to add all the words you speak about yourself! I love how Levi says, "The person you talk to most is yourself." This is so true...but it can be very damaging if you aren't careful!
So I ask, what are you saying to your mom, your daughter, your wife, your brother, and all the other people in your house...including yourself?
Maybe you had an "a-ha" moment during Quarantine Church yesterday, and today you're speaking life into your children. Maybe you've gone too many days without Starbucks and your caffeine-deficient words are filled with sarcasm and sadness! (Ok, that's just funny!) Maybe you've watched the news way too much, and everything you say or post is LOUD AND SCARY! Parent, maybe you don't think you are good enough to teach, or student, maybe you don't think you are smart enough to learn on your own, and your words have brutally self-inflicted several wounds. Maybe you need a word of encouragement because there are so many words readily available to destroy. You need a positive word spoken over you because words are powerful!
I'm thankful knowing scripture shares powerful words that direct us to our heavenly Father. In Romans 10, Paul speaks about what salvation looks like compared to following the law. "Every detail of life regulated by fine print!" is righteousness through the law verse 5 says, but then verse 6 says "But trusting God to shape the right living in us is a different story." And then verse 8, wonderful verse 8, "The word that saves is right here, as near as the tongue in your mouth, as close as the heart in your chest."
Student, parent, teacher, those still going to work, those quarantined at home, and everyone in between...the word that saves is right here! These next few verses is the hope we all need right now. This truth reveals the most important words you'll ever need to hear or ever need to say. Let's read together:
- Romans 10:9-10: Say the welcoming word to God - "Jesus is my Master" - embracing, body and soul, God's work of doing in us what he did in raising Jesus from the dead. That's it. You're not "doing" anything; you're simply calling out to God, trusting him to do it for you. That's salvation. With your whole being you embrace God setting things right, and then you say it, right out loud: "God has set everything right between him and me!"
You are going to hurl words through the air today, tomorrow, and in the future that you'll regret and be unable to catch them before they do damage. Sometimes it's going to rain all day, and your kids will act a fool, or your parents will be on your case, and you're going to want to shout, "What in the ham sandwich!"
That moment will pass and life will go on, however, longevity isn't guaranteed and certain words matter more than others. The words "you're simply calling out to God, trusting him to do it for you" are important words. "That's salvation," scripture says because God is setting things right! Say it out loud today. Shout, "God has set everything right between him and me!" Proclaim it to yourself, your spouse, your parent, your sibling, and even your family pet! Let others, and yourself, know that Jesus is the Master and He is working in you and through you!
These scriptures help us see that there is nothing we can do for salvation, but that Jesus does it all. If there is one thing certain today...if there is one thing you can count on...if there is one truth that makes all the difference...it's the truth that Jesus is Master!
So regardless of the good or bad words you'll say today, what words will you say to Jesus? It's time for a talk with the Savior because you deeply need to hear from Him. You need to share what's on your heart, the questions you have, and the fears that keep you up at night. You need to thank Him and praise Him and worship Him. And when you don't know what words to use, turn to His Word and to His council and never forget that God sets everything right!
Hmm, would you look at that...the rain stopped!
Have a great week and keep communicating with the One in control!