Thursday, June 30, 2011
Do you ever get a sore in your mouth? Either from eating too many wonderfully, red, ripe tomatoes in the summertime? Or by getting a little too wild when brushing your teeth and ramming your gums? Or by not keeping those cheeks out of the way when you're crunching down? Or that super-yummy, crunchy sweet cereal that tears up the roof of your mouth (think Captain Crunch)? Or sometimes, a sore just appears out of nowhere.
They're painful! And I don't like them; well, except for one small reason.
They remind me how often I sin with my mouth. Words. Food.
God is doing a number on me because I have had my fair share of mouth sores this year for all of the above reasons, except for the tomatoes. Ours aren't ready just yet....but give me time. I'll eat my portion - and yours too. Hee hee.
When I talk, and have that twinge of pain streak down my cheek from that sore, I am reminded that my words need to be edifying. They need to build others up, instead of tear them down. My words need to encourage. They need to heal. They need to sing songs and praises.
James, the half-brother of Jesus, reminds us that our tongue (mouth) is small but powerful. Inspired by the Holy Spirit, he says the tongue is a restless evil, full of deadly poison [James 3:8]. That reminds me of the times when I have been all-too-quick to throw out an insult, judgmental accusation or sarcastic response. I almost instantly hurt in my heart. I am sure it is the Holy Spirit, Who dwells within me, aching with pain from the restless, fatal, poison that oozes too easily from my mouth.
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O LORD, my Strength and my Redeemer. Psalm 19:14
A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks. Luke 6:45
Speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Ephesians 5:19-20
So after I remove the foot from my mouth - I quickly look for a snack. Snacks make everything better, right?
So when I put those salty chips, yummy french fries dripping with ketchup, or super crunchy cereal in my mouth - it BURNS when it hits that same sore - and I am quickly reminded that what and how much and the quality of what I eat and drink (especially around others who might be tempted) matters to God. Therefore, it needs to matter to me.
This especially matters since I have two little ones who watch everything I eat, and I mean everything! You can't even sneak a piece of gum around here without the pitter patter of feet coming to check out what that lil' crinkle noise was all about. They are learning eating patterns. They are determining what is right and what is wrong. Therefore...
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. 1 Corinthians 10:31
So maybe we all (emphasis on myself) need to be even more thankful for sores in our mouths. They remind us of how important our mouths are to our sanctification. We can be thankful that God is doing this work in our lives and that -
He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus [Philippians 1:6]