Devotions By Jan


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Scripture for Today: Ephesians 4:29 “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”

I tried growing Impatiens in our long narrow yard while living in Grenoble, France.  They seemed to really thrive in the climate and soil.  But I eventually gave up as our rabbit kept thinking they were his lunch!  This flower is said to be a symbol of motherly love as they easily release and scatter their seed at the slightest touch.  It certainly is not indicative of motherly love with its other names; “touch-me-not” and “snapweed.”

Today’s verse would be great on the wall of every family room!  Somehow, the standards in this verse are especially difficult to live out with those closest to us.  Within those four walls we feel free to speak our mind without any filters.  We allow ourselves to snap at others or use our words to distance ourselves from those around us.  However, the standard for our words is that they be helpful and beneficial to those listening.  And we are to build up and encourage others in a way that speaks to their needs.

More often than not, my words are expressed according to my need to say them.  I often am unaware or uncaring as to the needs of the listener.  But with that attitude the conversation is usually cut short.  If my words are not building up they are perhaps subtly tearing down.  How much does it really cost me to compliment or encourage?  I want my words to be gracious,  sweet to the soul and healing to the bones (Prov. 16:24).  I want my words to be like His; kind, compassionate and forgiving (verse 32).

Lord, make my words as gracious as Yours.


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