Saturday, June 15, 2013

Abounding Hope: Week 4--Words of Hope

Job's Friends

These three men (Job 2:11-13) traveled a long distance to go comfort their friend who had suffered so very much.   They started out doing all the compassionate things friends should do--they grieved with him, they stayed with him and they gave him the gift of silent presence to mourn his circumstances.

But then they started talking. Words began to spill out of them like water rushes over Niagra Falls. They analyzed the situation from their human perspective, seeking to find some explanation for the troubles or trials.  Like us, they tried to protect themselves by trying to figure out why Job was going through this horrific tragedy.  Somehow, we think that if we can think of a reason for their pain, we sort of insulate ourselves from it!  

Being a good friend doesn't mean you have all the answers. 
Love simply says I am with you!  
And if words are necessary,  they are best found in prayer.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
Isaiah 55:8-9
Words of hope only come as we let the Holy Spirit use our mouths to speak His thoughts.  As the old saying goes, "think before you speak", we must determine to choose words that are helpful, gentle and sensitive.  Each word should be a gift that inspires one to keep trusting in God! 

Recently I was watching a movie that included this stunning domino sequence set up. When  all the dominoes fell down, a spectacular image was revealed.   And I realized that our words are just like that. Our words work in conjunction with the words of others!  But do our words reveal more of Jesus Christ or do they reveal shackles that hold us hostage to despair? 

Don't live any longer the way this world lives. Let your way of thinking be completely changed. Then you will be able to test what God wants for you. And you will agree that what he wants is right. His plan is good and pleasing and perfect. (Romans 12:2 NIRV)

Every day that we spend time reading the Bible, praying & learning God's ways, we are fulfilling God's promise to make us a new creation!   And our relationships will be full of the grace and hope of our Heavenly Father!  In the end, we will say with Job, 

Have you been given word gifts of hope?  Tell us about it in the comments below.

Written by Angela Smith
WCW Director


Jen Baierl said...

Oh, I wish my gifting was words of hope. Sometimes I feel like I'm such a fixer & a planner [the mom in me] that I miss great opportunities to shut my mouth & not offer advice. The Lord has been working on me through this study to learn discernment & allow His Spirit to breath life!

WCW said...

This study is rockin' my world as it ties together hope with convicting truth!! I am so glad to know that we are truly works in process and that the more we are learning God's ways, the less of my mess I share with others!

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