"He must increase, but I must decrease."

Saturday, June 19, 2010

I am building an altar

These past few months have just been a season of lesson learning for me. I am beginning to wonder why all this seems to be happening all at once. Perhaps I have never really been open to learning more about my faults and being willing to change them. One of my biggest lessons right now is something I often face but have never dealt with, my tongue.
Everything came to a head last week at Jr. Camp. Long story short, I got aggravated with one of the counselors from the other church and said some things very unbecoming of a Christian lady. It was not until the following Tuesday that God pointed out what I had done and it was then that I decided I must surrender my speech, my tongue to Him so He can change me from the inside out. So with that long introduction here is some of what I am learning.
~Guard my heart. One of the hardest hitting chapters in Debi Pearl's book, Preparing to be a Help Meet, was the chapter on chaste conversation. She did not go on about what we should and should not say but more who we share with. Her point was that we as ladies do not need to share our hearts so openly with any other man but our husband. Doing so just forms an even deeper emotional connection with that man and it destroys our sacred mystique. This is something I really have to work at! I want my husband to be the only man (besides my daddy(s)) that knows and understands my heart.
~Honour others with my speech. Another thing that stuck out to me in Anna Sophia and Elizabeth Botkin's book So Much More is honouring my dad(s) with my speech. That is a tough one for me. God is our Father in heaven right? Well would it not make some since to show our fathers on earth some amount of reverence also? This goes for other people as well.
~Control what comes out of my mouth. I have a horrible habit of not thinking before I speak. Often I will say something and for days afterward it will eat at me. I need God to cover m mouth and help me to think about if what I am saying is appropriate.
Proverbs 11:22
Like a gold ring in a pig's snout is a beautiful woman who shows no discretion.
I want all of my speech to honour God in what I speak, how I speak and who I speak to.

My title mentions building an altar. In one of my favourite books, Hinds Feet on High Places, the main character, Much-Afraid, often finds herself building an altar along the journey that leads her to the High Place. So I have decided that on this adventure of life when times seem rough I will stop and build an altar an give whatever is going on in my life to God.

Father, here I build an altar and on it I lay my tongue, my speech and my will. Take them and do what you will with them.

Here are some verses that stood out to me.

Colossians 4:6
Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one.

Psalm 34:13
Keep your tongue from evil, And your lips from speaking deceit.

Psalm 39:1
I said, “I will guard my ways, Lest I sin with my tongue; I will restrain my mouth with a muzzle, While the wicked are before me.”

Psalm 120:2
Deliver my soul, O LORD, from lying lips And from a deceitful tongue.

Proverbs 18:21
Death and life are in the power of the tongue, And those who love it will eat its fruit.

Proverbs 21:23
Whoever guards his mouth and tongue Keeps his soul from troubles.

James 1:26
If anyone among you thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this one’s religion is useless.

1 Peter 3:10
For “He who would love life and see good days, Let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips from speaking deceit.

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Colossians 4:6
Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one.