Proverbs 25:11 “The right word spoken at the right time is as beautiful as gold apples in a silver bowl.”
Picture with me a bowl full of red delicious apples. Crispy crunch with every bite and sweet on the taste buds. They are pleasant and yummy with every bite.
Now picture a bowl of apples, some wrinkled and some with brown spots. They look very unappealing to even want to pick up to eat. If you eat one, they are sour to the taste.
There is a story in Luke 24 of two of Jesus’ followers walking on the road to Emmaus. This was after Jesus’ death and His resurrection, but they had only heard of the empty tomb that morning. The two men were sad and dwelling on the death of Jesus as they talked. Jesus walks up to them, but they don’t recognize him. As Jesus asks what they are talking about and why they are so sad, one of the men, Cleopas shares of what had happened and how they expected Jesus to free them but He died, was buried and now His tomb was empty.
Jesus again repeats what He said before His death how the things that happened had to happen the way they did. Then, instead of joining their sad conversation, Jesus talks about all the good in scripture that had been written about himself. Reaching Emmaus, the men invite the stranger to eat with them, which Jesus does and as He breaks bread and blesses it, the two followers finally recognize Jesus but then Jesus disappeared before they could say more. The two followers then rejoicing go and share their news with the twelve apostles.
When Jesus found these two men, they were very sad because they had allowed their conversation to focus on earthly things that had happened. They had become so focused on the negative that they didn’t even recognize Jesus when He joined them.
This is the trap Satan uses to ensnare us all, to take our focus off of Jesus. When our conversations make us sad, angry, frustrated or riled up, Satan is happy because we are talking about this world and taking our eyes and mind off Jesus. Remember Colossians 3:2, “We must not get caught up in this world but set our minds on Jesus.”
Notice when Jesus turned the conversation to scripture and spoke of good things and shared the good Jesus had done. He didn’t join in the sadness but tried to get their focus back on Jesus. Ephesians 4:29 tells us, “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.” At that moment Jesus knew those men needed their spirits lifted so He used words that would build them up not tear them down.
Colossians 4:6 tells us, “Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how to answer each one.” When we allow our words to edify someone else not tear them down we can escape Satan’s trap. Our words should be full of blessings, so we don’t discourage others or find ourselves getting angry, frustrated or riled up.
Lately we have been surrounded by things that can easily get us riled up and it is getting worse daily. I myself have been guilty of getting upset and angry at that the things happening and where this world is going, and I have been caught up with others in the grumble train.
1 Timothy 2:1-5 gently reminds me that no matter what is happening Jesus has asked me to do one thing, pray. He is the Mediator between God and man and He wants salvation for all, that is His job. Mine is simply to pray and trust God has a plan in motion.
Protesting, complaining, grumbling won’t change anything it only keeps us ensnared in Satan’s trap filling us with hate. Only Jesus can change our hearts and when we feel the grumble train rumbling, we need to turn off social media and turn to the Bible. We need to, as followers of Christ, represent our Living God and His kingdom not this world and what others do. Turn our conversations heavenward when others begin to grumble just like Jesus did.
I love the verse in Proverbs, like apples of gold. Our words can be sweet and welcoming when we use them to bring others hope, to help them feel important and needed, to praise Jesus. But when our words only frustrate, rile up, make us or others sad then it’s like the bowl of bad sour apples. With everything happening around us we need to be careful who we are following and what we are saying. We need to be a blessing and always walk and speak in love just like Jesus did.
Today, you are a blessing. You are a child of God and His creation. Today, you are a blessing to me because you support me in these devotionals and I am thankful to you for the support. Today, you are a blessing to those you talk to because you get to share Jesus and praise Him for what He’s done or is doing in your life. Today, you can shine like apples of gold.
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