Your Words Shape Your Destiny

Daily Devotion | Day 280

“But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned” (Matthew 12:36-37, NKJV).

Human beings are unique among God’s creation. Part of our uniqueness is that we are creatures of speech. We possess the ability to form words and create language out of these words. Our words are the expression of our inner self. You are your words. That is, by your words you reveal who you are. In the spiritual realm there is no such thing as ‘meaningless’ words. Every word from your mouth has consequences even if you don’t intend there to be consequences. Therefore, words are not neutral. To borrow a term from the world of electricity, words carry a charge. They carry a positive charge or a negative charge.

The point is, in the spiritual realm words carry consequences. Intention is important, but it is not required. What matters is that you are speaking and you mean to speak. We’ve been miseducated about words. This explains why people say things and assume that their words are ‘nothing.’ It also explains why people say a lot of things followed by, “I was just joking;” “I was kidding.”

You may have noticed a pattern in the Bible, the book God has given for your instruction. You will find all kinds of stories in the Bible. One thing you will not find is a line intended to be a joke. Take every man of God in the Bible. Take Jesus and the Apostles. Jesus didn’t say one thing He meant as a joke. This doesn’t mean He was not an interesting Person. On the contrary, He was very charismatic. But people were attracted to Him, not because He was a comedian, but because of His authority (Matthew 7:28-29). You don’t need to crack jokes to be an interesting person. What you need is magnetic authority through purity of life.

Pay attention to what Jesus is saying in today’s opening Scripture passage. According to Him, on judgment day people will give account of every idle word they’ve spoken. By “idle word,” He means a word that in of itself is useless. He didn’t say people will give account of some idle words. No, He says “every idle word.” If your words didn’t matter, you wouldn’t be required to give an account of them. If your words didn’t carry any consequences, there would be no need for judgment.

Your words shape your destiny.

After saying this, Jesus adds another statement. He says, “by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.” Your words can cause you to be justified or condemned. This means your words influence your destinyThrough your words you have a say in your destiny. You can use your words to your advantage or you can use them to your disadvantage. Jesus has done His part by teaching you the truth about words. What you do with His teaching is up to you. The choice is yours.

But I encourage you to choose life. Speak wholesome words for your own sake. Use your tongue to your advantage. A well-trained tongue is a well-trained soul. And, a well-trained soul is a healthy soul.

BlessingMay the favor of God be your shield in all your ways. Amen.

For further studyLuke 19:20-23; Ephesians 4:17-32; 5:1-21

“I Was Only Joking”

 Daily Devotional: Day 106

“Like a madman who throws firebrands, arrows, and death, is the man who deceives his neighbor, and says, “I was only joking!”’ (Proverbs 26:18-19, RSV).

Words, words, words. Our words have a lot to do with our personal integrity and our spiritual authority. Being a good Father, God wants to train us to be like his Son, Jesus Christ in character. This training has several components. One of them is the training of our tongue. This is where today’s Scripture reading gets interesting. Some people deceive you, then they say, “I was only joking.” But the Bible likens such people to a madman who throws firebrands, arrows, and death.

Here is the point: Deceiving other people under the pretext of ‘joking’ is like throwing firebrand, arrows and death at them. In other words, a deceptive joke is harmful to the person who is being deceived, even if we mean no harm. Deception is deception, and our intentions for deceiving are irrelevant. At the end of the day, it makes no difference to God, because the effect is the same: deception is harmful. Once we start calling deception “a joke,” it is only a matter of time before deception becomes our reality.

 What we think is ‘funny,’ God might think otherwise. God wants to lead us to a place of integrity where we mean what we say, and we say what we mean. This is advanced training in godliness (ATG). When we make light of our own words, we undermine our spiritual authority. Think about it: We use our mouth to pray, to sing God’s praises, to confess our faith, etc. If we use the same mouth to deceive – albeit jokingly – how will that not affect the integrity of our prayer and worship life? I know this is a hard one, because most of us love to have fun. But at what cost? Let’s heed the instructions of our Father in heaven because He knows what’s best for us. It’s time to discipline our tongue.

Prayer:

Dear Father, thank you that you always want what is best for me. Open my mind to understand your ways. Teach me to grow in spiritual integrity through the training of my tongue. In the Name of Jesus, I pray. Amen.

For further study: James 3:1-12

Speak Right, Reap Right

Daily Devotional: Day 34

“From the fruit of his mouth a man is satisfied; he is satisfied by the yield of his lips. Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits” (Proverbs 18:20-21, RSV).

Once again, the Bible unveils heavenly truths for our edification.  A lot can be said about today’s passage, but for now, let’s focus on just one aspect, i.e. consistency in our words. The Bible says that we shall be satisfied by the fruit of our mouth and the yield of our lips. This means God has put in your mouth the ability to produce fruit that will bring you satisfaction. As the earth yields crops of different kinds, so your mouth can yield or produce a harvest of good things for your satisfaction. Note that when the Bible speaks of fruit, it presupposes the existence of seeds. The Bible further declares that death and life are in the power of the tongue. Whose tongue? Yours and mine. With your tongue you can speak life, and with the same tongue you can speak death. See how much power the Lord has given to your words! This is profound divine truth. If you need to pause and ponder over it before you continue, do so.

When you speak, you’re planting seeds that will return to you with a harvest. You see, every seed produces fruit of its kind. Our God is a God of law and divine principles. So, if you sow apple seeds, for example, expect to reap apple fruit. It’s the same with your words. They carry weight. An important part of using your tongue to your advantage, as the Father intended, is to be consistent. This means, your words must not fluctuate between speaking doubt and faith, deception and truth, or fear and boldness. It’s important that you consistently speak faith, blessings and truth. Train yourself to mean what you say, and to say what you mean. If you have a habit of saying things you don’t mean or of deceiving, you’ll confuse your own spirit. Some people speak faith when it suits them, and other times, they’ll conveniently speak doubt and fear and all kinds of negative things which corrupt the power and efficacy of their words. Learn from Jesus. He was consistent in his words, always speaking truth and consistently confessing faith in his Father. God respects consistency. Speak right, and reap right.

Pray:

Daddy, thank you for giving my words power to yield fruit for my satisfaction. Your love for me amazes me. Teach me to be consistent in my speech. Let faith and truth proceed from my mouth. And as I sow the right seeds, grant me a harvest of healing, deliverance, provision, peace and fullness of joy. Thank you for hearing me. In the Name of Jesus. Amen. 

For further study: Matthew 12:33-37