Before leaving on a trip, God used intuition to whisper quite warningly, “Elizabeth you are going to see your dirt, be Ok with that.” Friend, the dirt displayed for all to see! It was during a trip that the Lord unveiled to me by my conscience and through a faithful friend how my speech can use a smidgen of fine-tuning in the sense of gentleness and graciousness when patience is being tested. Nothing is closer to the truth when C.S Lewis writes in one of my favorite books, Mere Christianity….“When a man is getting better he understands more and more clearly the evil that is still left in him.” One morning conversing to Yahwh about the still tightly twisted and tangled vines of my heart, I sat down with the Bible on my lap and opened it to Colossians 4:6 (After going to the concordance). It reads, “Let your speech always [Yeshua pauses there…always…always…always] be gracious, and seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.” It does not say when you are having a delightful day, it does not say when you are glad and feel light as a feather. It says…always. And I ponder, Oh dear…how I have let precious moments just slip between my fingertips to be gracious with my words and tone. All that missed glory to my King… all those moments in the past where I could have been such a testimony…but how kind is He who refuses to let me dwell and stay in the ruins of my past… by the power of His redemptive and healing grace, He turns my neck slowly so that I may focus on Calvary, and He sweetly reminds me of His love and forgiveness and that He is not finished gardening. Selah.
I would like to share with you an excerpt of a sermon I listened to, called “The Speech of the New Man” that is based off of Colossians 4:6. I hope you enjoy it and that it blesses you as it has and will continue to bless me.
“You’re a new man, did you know that? And along with those other things, with your new lifestyle should come a new speech.
The problem with us new people, new creatures, is not that we have two natures, the good and the bad, the old and the new. The problem is the new nature, the new I, has been so strongly influenced by the flesh that it just can’t shake it. An illustration.
You might take a whiskey bottle and dump out all its contents. Empty it of all that rot that’s in there. And you know what happens? Smell it. It stinks. The odor remains. You want to know something? That’s not unlike a Christian. You are a new creature; the old contents are gone, you are new, but you know something? Some of the old stink is there. You pour into that whiskey bottle that you’ve got there a fresh water supply, and then you pour it out. And you pour more in, you pour – and you just keep filling it, keep filling it. And little by little by little by little, the smell will fade.
How’s it going to be removed? Look what he says. “Put off some things,” remember those? Chapter 3: “Put on some things.” Chapter 3, verse 15: “Let the peace of Christ rule.” Verse 16: “Let the Word of Christ dwell.” Verse 17: “Let the name of Christ rule.”
Take care how you live in the family; wives, husband, children, father, servants, masters. Take care of your mouth, as we saw in our study, from verses 2 to 6 of chapter 4. And when you take care of all of those things, in the energy of the Spirit of God, then the new man is going to be the man that God created the new man to be. Listen, beloved, Christ is sufficient, isn’t He? He’s sufficient to make you a new creature. And when you’ve been made a new creature He asks that you have the aroma of a new creature, and that means taking care of some of those old things by the cleansing agency of the filling of the Spirit of God as you yield to Him.”
Beloved, thank God that He has given us the Holy Spirit to enable us live a life that it may be a sweet aroma of a blossoming garden to Him and to those who walk along beside us. Let us all yield to Him more and more each day, have His Word dwell in us richly so that we may abide by His Word, and bloom…for His glory! In Christ’s name, Amen!
Wow Elizabeth this is some great stuff! I think we all need to be careful with our speech, it’s so easy to say the wrong thing at times, I have had my share of words I’ve said that I cannot take back though I wish I could 🙁 but it serves as a way to teach us to be careful. I love the part in the sermon you shared that says “Empty it of all that rot that’s in there. And you know what happens? Smell it. It stinks. The odor remains.” how true is that! We may be new creatures but it doesn’t mean we are totally wiped of everything, some of it stays with us and it takes time to get rid of. Thanks for the encouragement :). Love ya!
Love this, great simile! It’s so true, we have to keep getting washed and little by little, be cleaned of our stank. It’s through the pouring in and pouring out that we are sanctified and made more into His likeness. Praise God for His faithfulness!