READ : Isaiah 50:4-10
Pauline would never go anywhere because when she returned home she would vigorously examine everything she had said and lash herself mentally for saying stupid or possibly hurtful things. Her world grew smaller and smaller and so did her soul-life as she focused on herself, her thoughts, and her words.
You and I, too, often review conversations and are dismayed to realize how often we miss opportunities to stand up for Jesus, give a word of witness, or speak kindly to comfort or encourage someone.
Isaiah found the answer to this problem. In a passage that presages the Messiah, he says the Lord has given him an instructed tongue, to know the word that sustains the weary. In order for us to have words ready to encourage and witness, we have to be prepared. Every day we have to read the Bible and pray. We have to practice at home so we will be used to verbalizing testimony and encouragement. We have to risk sounding awkward or stupid and trust the Holy Spirit to prompt our tongues with genuine love. And then afterwards, instead of berating ourselves, we must trust the Spirit to use our words for His loving purpose. Then our joy will grow and God will be praised as He deserves to be praised.
Father, waken us morning by morning with ears that listen like one being taught to speak apt words in Your service. In Jesus’ name. Amen.