Hebrews 11:3 (KJV) “Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.”
Renee and I recently had to remodel two of our bathrooms. After 20 years, one of them in particular had some moisture problems. Simply put, it was time to replace and rebuild the walls. Some of the frame work had to be ripped out and redone because the moisture got into some of the framework also.
Over time, some of the framework of our lives suffer from deterioration. In the beginning of the relationship with our spouse, words of love pour out. Long conversations flow with interest and excitement. Hugs and embraces carry great affection. Letters, cards, poems, and creative actions with which to express love are the imaginations and plannings of the day. The framing going on is definitely the framing of love. But then over time, deteriorating forces creep in. Few people intentionally mean to be the vessel that brings deterioration to something they once so greatly cherished. They usually get caught up in a negative way of speaking and acting that builds momentum and that they don’t know how to escape from. Words most often play the biggest role.
The old saying, “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me,” is one of the greatest lies and fallacies ever taught a child. Words can bring life and words can bring deterioration leading to the death of something precious to us. Proverbs 18:21 says, “The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” This is telling us that our words have great power to produce life and blessing – to frame and create what is beautiful as God did, or to tear down and destroy – much like Satan, the destroyer of all does. It is a terrifying thought I know – to think that your words could be the handiwork of Satan to destroy. But, when you give over to wrong thinking and let your emotions and words fly (that you know are wrong,) that is who you are yielding to.
What is God’s plan? Today’s Fresh Manna verse gives us the core value through how we should think through what we speak – to frame and build with the result of having something good appear that previously wasn’t there. Words carry that power when they are godly, sincere, consistent, in filled with faith.
At the beginning of my marriage I had learned this truth by reading a book “The Tongue: A Creative Force” by an author Charles Capps. It opened my eyes to the exhortation of scripture to take our words seriously. It radically changed my life and it is one of the most critical areas I continue to think about almost daily.
At that time, Renee was a new wife that did not know how to clean, cook, or do house. She had lived at home all her life and her mother did most everything for her. I had lived on my own for five years and was way a head of her in home economics. I had a choice, complain and nag which I knew would bring a touch of death to our love, or I could frame her with words. I did that. I had Proverbs 31 written in calligraphy and beautifully framed and I gave it to Renee as a gift to hang in our living room. I told her she was that virtuous woman. I’d take her in the living room and read to her the work that God was doing in her. I’d do this often and remind her what she was becoming by God’s grace. It helped me avoid the temptation to complain and always exhorted her to try hard. She did! She became the best!
Whenever we’d have a fight (like couples do sometimes) and I’d let my guard down and say something negative about her, it took so much time to recover. It made me that much more determined to get my words right. When the kids were young, I taught them to praise their mother all the time. It was common to hear them say at almost every meal, “You are the best cook in the world mom.” “You are the best mom in the world.”
Trust me, over the years I failed in keeping my words right many times. Most people do. But most people that fail in these areas are not doing what I purposed to do – frame what I wanted to create with godly words of edification. At least I had a good repair and remodeling plan going on.
Proverbs 18:7 says, “A fool’s mouth is his undoing, and his lips are a snare to his soul.” God doesn’t want us or what is precious to us to be snared or torn down by our words. That is what God wants us to avoid. He wants us to learn to speak life. He wants us to see the good and for what we can’t see, speak words of framing faith. Proverbs 18:4 says, “A person’s words can be life-giving water; words of true wisdom are as refreshing as a bubbling brook.”
Have you got any remodeling you need done? Don’t do patchwork. Rip out the frame and rebuild from scratch with words that create and bring new life to what was dead. Let the fruit of the Spirit reside in you and spill from you. If you are sincere and consistent, you will eventually get your harvest. As Proverbs 18:20 says, “From the fruit of his mouth a man’s stomach is filled; with the harvest from his lips he is satisfied.”
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2008 Tim Burt, All rights reserved.