September 22, 2011

Words of Wisdom

Proverbs 6:16-19

From the fruit of their lips people are filled with good things, and the work of their hands brings them reward.
Proverbs 12:14


This proverb is quite striking. It states that we will be filled (or satisfied) with good things (blessings) by the fruit of our lips (things we say). Of course, “the fruit” mentioned here must be good. (Bad fruit is simply garbage.) So the fruit of our lips would refer to good, helpful, upbuilding things that we say. In other words, this fruit would be wise counsel—words of wisdom.

God chose to reveal himself to us in words: words spoken to Adam and Eve in the garden, words spoken through the prophets, words recorded in the Bible. Ultimately God spoke in Jesus, the Word made flesh. Words are part of how God comes to us, and words are part of how we connect to God and to each other.

So it’s important to use words wisely. We need to take care that what we say resonates with the words and wisdom of God. And when we do, people and communities will be blessed, and that will result in blessing for us, which satisfies the heart.

This is similar to enjoying the benefits and blessings of doing good work. Whether we have used our hands to make a masterpiece of art, to serve others in our work, or to clean up our home or yard—if we have done it to glorify God (Colossians 3:17), we are blessed in the work we have done. And the results satisfy our hearts.

What will the fruit of your lips be today—a word that helps someone grow closer to God?

We know, Lord, that our words affect others. As I speak today, may my words reflect your heart. Amen.

About the author — Henry Kranenburg

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