If you’ve ever worked for a church, you’ll understand that it comes with it’s own unique set of pros and cons. I work for my church in New Jersey, and since I began about 5 months ago, I’m thankful to say I’ve seen more of the upside than the down.
One of my favorite things about working in our central office is that there is truth spoken all around me. There are words of mercy, grace, light and peace posted on our walls. There are scriptures and wisdom and guidance in every office. We post it above every desk.
Today I even discovered something on the printer tray.
The rule is, if the photocopy isn’t yours, don’t read it. But I accidentally looked at something I believed to be mine, and it was so straightforward and brilliant and terrifying… I had practically read the whole thing in the 3 accidental seconds my eyes spent on it!
It said this:
WHOSE VOICE ARE YOU LISTENING TO?
Are you gasping for air like I was? I took one look at this piece of paper, and my jaw dropped open.
Because here’s the thing:
I rush my child when I tell her she should, “know this by now!”
I frighten my child when I tell her that if she keeps us this behavior, “it will limit your potential!”
I push her when I tell her to “hurry up!” or “try harder!”
I confuse her when I tell her to be like Jesus, and I act so differently than he does.
I condemn her when I remind her of how many times a day she messes up.
I stress her when I lose my temper, when I expect too much of her, when I forget she’s still learning and growing.
I discourage her when I sigh at her mistakes, when I don’t forgive her, when I remind her of old wrongs.
I worry her when I behave in all these ways – I cause her to worry that she, created in the image of God himself, is not enough…
When moms and dads fail to speak life to our kids, we chalk it up to human nature. I mean, we all get angry, we all get frustrated, and we all make mistakes in raising our kids. Right?
But never before today did I tie together these two truths:
I do those things because Satan is in this world, seeking who he may devour;
He speaks through my lips to devour my child.
I know that more often than not, it’s God’s words on my lips. At least, I want to believe I speak more truth and light into her than darkness. But my prayer for today is that she hears more of God through my mouth. More truth from my lips. More grace from my tongue. That God would continually give me words of peace, security, & grace.
I want my words to be scripture fed into her soul straight from my heart! That even the words I say to her are so steeped in truth that she can’t help but believe them.
It’s a task much easier said than done.
So for today, I’ll meditate on Proverbs 16:24
Gracious words are like a honeycomb,
sweetness to the soul and health to the body.