February 21, 2017
“What you have said in the dark will be heard in the daylight, and what you have whispered in the ear in the inner rooms will be proclaimed from the roofs.” Luke 12:3 (NIV)
I wasn’t sure why, but I just knew the texts I was receiving were never intended for my eyes.
Suddenly I received a call from my daughter: “Mom, are you getting my texts?” she asked, a bit panicky.
Yes, I was. Madi’s phone was receiving my texts, while my phone received hers. We both had the same reaction: Oh no! What conversations were we in the middle of that we wouldn’t want the other to read? What texts would others send that we might feel embarrassed for the other to read?
Somehow our cell service had crossed our phone numbers, and until they could figure out what was going wrong, there was no way to straighten out the problem.
I’m guessing you haven’t experienced this exact same situation, but maybe you’ve accidently forwarded an email thread to the wrong person. Perhaps you’ve had a phone conversation overheard that should’ve been private. Maybe you wrote a note that a particular person should’ve never read.
When I came across today’s verse in my quiet time, I was reminded of Jesus’ words: “What you have said in the dark will be heard in the daylight, and what you have whispered in the ear in the inner rooms will be proclaimed from the roofs” (Luke 12:3).
Nothing is ever truly private. Especially in this time when everything and anything can be seen on social media — all we do and say has the possibility of going to an unintended recipient. Especially when we speak unkind words.
Jesus commands us to love our neighbor as ourselves, (Matthew 22:39), but when our emotions want to take over, this can be difficult. In the moments when my anger is hot or my heart is hurt, I struggle most to put self-control into practice. That’s exactly when today’s verse gives me an added reason to choose my words carefully.
When I’m tempted to speak — or type — in anger, I can simply ask myself a couple of questions:
If this conversation went from private to public, would feelings be hurt?
If the person I am talking about heard what I said, would I be embarrassed?
While all of us are human and certainly prone to make mistakes, Jesus’ words give us reason to be careful with our words: “There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known” (Luke 12:2, NIV).
I was so grateful that during the phone fiasco no embarrassing texts transpired. I pray that by following the Holy Spirit’s lead that will be the case each and every day.
Dear Jesus, I want to love others the way You love us all — unconditionally. My words are a reflection of what is in my heart, I know. Holy Spirit, empower me to guard my words so I never have to be embarrassed when they are brought into the light. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Proverbs 18:21, “The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” (NIV)
Psalm 19:14 “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my strength and my Redeemer.” (NKJV)
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If today’s devotion resonates with you, you’ll appreciate Karen Ehman’s newest book: Zip It: The Keep it Shut 40-Day Challenge.
Visit Lynn Cowell’s website for “5 Ways to Use Our Words for Good.”
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
With each text you receive and each call you take today, decide to only say words that could be “proclaimed from the rooftops.”
© 2017 by Lynn Cowell. All rights reserved.