Ephesians 4:29, “When you talk, do not say harmful things, but say what people need—words that will help others become stronger. Then what you say will do good to those who listen to you.”
Have you or your child ever squeezed the toothpaste tube from the middle? Usually when you do this the toothpaste comes oozing out faster than you could stop it and you have a minty mess of goop to clean up. And let me tell you, toothpaste doesn't clean up easily with one wipe of a cloth.
Now let me ask you about essential oils like peppermint, lavender, lemon, eucalyptus, you know what I'm talking about. When you open a bottle of them the smell is quite strong. When you diffuse the oils through the air the smells can be lasting. The same goes when you apply them to your body; They linger for a bit. Sometimes they can leave lasting marks too. One Christmas my daughter and I were making bath salts and one of my oils was used and then set onto my dining room table. There must have been a little oil on the bottle because when I moved it there was a ring where the varnish was gone and a circle had replaced it. I've yet to fix it and it still has its mark left behind.
Of course, not all oils are as potent, some are even pleasant to have fill your home. Perhaps you're not into using oils but have you burnt pleasant smelling candles around your home? Candles, where you take a deep breath, smile, and say ‘ahh’.
Lastly, have you ever been around someone who is wearing some good smelling perfume or cologne? You almost want to take a few more whiffs because you like the smell. Then there are those scents that are very strong not so pleasant, such as a cologne or perfume and you can't get away from fast enough. I can see you smile because you know exactly what I mean.
All these examples bring me to a point in the Bible that Jesus is trying to teach us. Our words yield great power- Proverbs 18:21, “What you say can mean life or death. Those who speak with care will be rewarded.”
Have you ever been upset or angry at a coworker, your boss, a friend who gossips behind your back? I believe we all can say yes to at least one of those, we are humans living in a world of sin. When you have been hurt the easy thing to do is lash out and say angry words back. Sometimes we don't even mean to but when we are squeezed just the wrong way the words simply erupt out like the toothpaste and the mess left behind is hard to clean up. Like my oil on the table, when we clean up the words spoken, by apologies and kinder words, the mark left behind can still be permanent.
Controlling our thoughts, which a lot of times turn into words, cannot be done on our own. While on this earth in our sinful bodies we simply can't control ourselves. We need the help of Jesus to learn a better approach to those around us so we can leave a pleasant lingering scent behind, to those we’ve talked to. When we walk away from a conversation we want others to have seen Jesus and want to know Him more.
But, if we're busy saying mean things, yelling out of anger, gossiping, or tearing down others to the person's face or behind their back, does that person get to experience Jesus or will they feel hurt and discouraged?
Paul tells us to build others up so they feel stronger and then they just might listen to you when you share about Jesus. When they know Jesus, they have a chance to come to Him and have salvation (life)! Proverbs 12:18 tells us when we speak harshly it's like a sword thrust, but wise words heal, and my favorite verse, “Gracious words are like honey, sweet to the soul and health to the body”- Proverbs 16:24.
We all want to be a witness for Jesus, right? At least as Christians we should want to be because that is what God calls us to be. 2 Corinthians 2:15, “Our offering to God is this: We are the sweet smell of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are being lost.”
Remember that wonderful perfume or cologne that required a second whiff? Or that one that made you look the other way. Our words and actions should be so sweet that when someone is with us, they will want to stick around and learn more because they are drawn to who Jesus is. However, if we come at them browbeating them, they will quickly turn the other way. Ephesians 5:1-2a, “You are God’s children whom he loves, so try to be like him. 2 Live a life of love…”
I think it's safe to say this should be an easy lesson that we can learn from Christ so we can not only be more like Him as He perfects us for Heaven, but that we can also use in spreading the gospel and bring others to the Savior. What we spew from our mouths should leave the sweet taste of Jesus to all those around us. Family, friends, co-workers, the neighbor or even the stranger at the store.
Like the oils, candles, even perfumes make us glad, when we speak kindly and wisely to those around us, we can build them up and make their hearts glad.
Colossians 4:6, “When you talk, you should always be kind and pleasant so you will be able to answer everyone in the way you should.”
Proverbs 15:4, “As a tree gives fruit, healing words give life, but dishonest words crush the spirit.”
How are you using your words today?
The Bible says that those who hunger and thirst after righteousness will be filled. (Matthew 5:6) If you only study just the surface of the Bible flipping the pages and skimming as you go, you will only gain a surface understanding. But, God has so much he wants to show you. God’s Word will literally light up your life and bring hope in all places in your life good and bad. But you cannot receive that light and hope if you do not seek for it. Why would you not want to have the fullest possible understanding of your Savior and Creator? Let's continue our study through Titus 2:11-15
Study 5, Titus 2:11-15- https://www.docdroid.net/jEFQCcI/study-5-docx
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