Tuesday, January 18, 2011

#127 - Talk Less!

Good AFTERNOON! :) Hope all is going well for you so far today! As for me, things have been great! I feel extremely blessed to be in this season of my life. That every day I get to choose what I do, and not have to answer to a "time-clock" of clocking in or out of work. Don't get me wrong, I was blessed with the job I had in Corporate America, but I am SO JACKED that I no longer have to be there!!! What a blessing. It has been over a year now that I left.... and in ALL that time, I think I've only had MAYBE 3 bad days! What a blessing! Now... I get to spend a lot of time in the Word, journaling, seeking the Lord on specific areas of my life, writing this devotion, writing books, raising our son up in the Lord, & running a business with my husband. 

I just want to say.... if while you read that paragraph, if you got a knot in your stomach because you don't like your job, or you want more freedom, more breathing room, more time to do the things you love.... if you felt frustrated.... I encourage you, SEEK THE LORD! If you are unhappy in your current place, maybe God has somewhere else for you? I'm not saying it will happen overnight. But, if you feel miserable, DO SOMETHING! Step ONE: Get diligent about seeking the Lord. Have a Quiet Time. Have your Bible & a journal, sit down and take some focused time to be QUIET and LISTEN! I promise, God will give you steps. He will help you. If your miserable at your job, make this the year that things change. Either your attitude changes about your work, or your work changes. I can't describe the fulfillment I have had in that last 14 months doing what I love & doing what I'm called to do. Unfortunately, I would bet that a lot of Christians are just punching a time clock and not living in their gifts. STEP TWO: If you have no clue what you would want to do or how you could possibly change careers at this stage in your life... ask yourself this question: What do I love to do? What could I just do for hours and it not seem like work? What makes me happy when I'm doing it? Some ideas.... maybe it's cooking, sewing, being outside working in the yard, listening to people, helping people get their finances in order, teaching, working with kids. Whatever it is... that joy, that fulfillment, that gift... maybe that is where God will direct you. 

OK... all of that was bonus. Let's get into the "planned" part of today's devotion:
Proverbs 18:2 - A [self-confident] fool has no delight in understanding but only in revealing his personal opinions and himself.

Proverbs 18:6-7 - A [self-confident] fool's lips bring contention, and his mouth invites a beating. A [self-confident] fool's mouth is his ruin, and his lips are a snare to himself.
Proverbs 18:21 - Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and they who indulge in it shall eat the fruit of it [for death or life].
Proverbs 31:26 - She opens her mouth in skillful and godly Wisdom, and on her tongue is the law of kindness [giving counsel and instruction]. 
Wow! The above scriptures are pretty blatant, aren't they? When we look at all the things a fool does, I don't know about you, but it makes me think about how maybe sometimes I do things like this "fool." That sometimes maybe I talk too much. 

So... let's check out what this fool does...
  1. When he's in a conversation, he makes sure to fit in HIS opinion! He has GOT to make sure that the people he is talking to know HIS opinion! (18:2) A personal check: Do you always make sure to fit in your opinion? Even if it may be on the borderline of gossip? "Well, I think that she shouldn't have done that because...."
  2. He makes sure to talk about HIMSELF! If the subject is not on him, he often changes it starting the sentence with: "I...", "I did this yesterday....", "I think....", "I... I... I... I....". (18:2) - A personal check: Listen to yourself when you are talking to others. Do you often change the subject and begin a sentence with "I"? Is it all about you? 
  3. The fool brings strife. They add fuel to the fire of a pre-existing frustration. They drag on the drama. They breathe life into the drama. Even if it sometimes means sounding like "The Martyr." They plant negative thoughts into other people about "so & so." They plant seeds of doubt about other people. (18:6-7) -  A personal check: Do you find yourself having a pitty-party when you are around others. Taking on the hat of a martyr all the while, you are talking about WHY you are the martyr. Because "so & so" is selfish and had to have their way. Do you find yourself talking about other people, saying things you WOULD NOT say if they were around? 
The Outcome OPTIONS: 
  • LIFE or DEATH (18:21) - 
  • The way of the fool is the sure way to the road of death. Maybe not immediately. And in some cases, maybe not even always eternal death. I believe some people may truly be saved, but participate in the things of a fool. For those people, maybe they do go to heaven when they die.... BUT, on earth, they basically live "hell on earth." They do not live in Victory. Their life encompasses defeat. Their life is not one of victory. They struggle in many areas of life. They are not happy. They constantly are looking for areas to feed "drama" because it allows them to feel "involved" or "important." 
  • The way of the righteous will lead to life. They do not feed on negative. They do not feed on drama. They often talk less. They often do not give their opinion because they listen to the "red flag" that goes up in their spirit when they get ready to open their mouth. They choose to heed to the "red flag" and just not talk or give their opinion. They realize that it would be feeding gossip or strife, and instead they choose life. They end up living their dreams on earth. Sure they do go to heaven when they die, but they also live a life of heaven on earth too! They are happy, fulfilled & prospering! 
You choose your road. I know for me.... like the Proverbs 31 woman does in verse 26, I'm going to do my best to open my mouth in WISDOM. If I'm going to speak, I'm going to choose wisely the words. I'm going to choose the way of life & most of the time probably just TALK LESS! :)

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