Words Matter, Especially the Ones We Say to Ourselves by Lisa-Jo Baker

Words matter“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” Ephesians 2:10 (NLT)

There are so many things I’m not good at.

And apparently I have an inner monologue determined to record each and every one of them from the past year.

There’s a voice in my head that tells me I am not enough. Some days it’s quiet and other days it’s super shouty.

It’s the strangest thing to discover the back of your brain muttering mean things to yourself.

The voice is so ordinary, so routine by now that I rarely stop to investigate. I just let the words run through my veins until they seem like a normal part of my DNA.

This house will never be clean.

You’ll never get caught up on the laundry.

Your words won’t match up to hers.

You’ve never lived up to your New Year’s resolutions.

You’re never going to get caught up.

You’re going to start another year already behind the curve.

You’re just not good at this.

I heard that voice in the car today. I was sitting in a coffee shop parking lot in our minivan. Alone. Maybe that’s why I listened without just letting it wash over me. Maybe that’s why I tuned in to the nefarious whispering I’d been ignoring until then.

I listened and almost couldn’t believe what I heard. I was surprised, actually. Kind of amazed that I was capable of such petty meanness to myself. Because the thing about that voice is it’s a nitpicker. It delights in destroying the DNA of a day, a dream, a moment … bit-by-petulant-bit.

But when I tuned in, the voice sounded more and more like static. Fuzzy, harsh, unforgiving and small. My friend Holley Gerth calls it “devil static” – the noise that tries to drown out the truth God is speaking into our lives and through our lives. The noise that crackles and cackles and tries to poke fun at who we are growing up to become. The noise that tries to derail us out of sheer embarrassment.

I told that voice off today.

Yes, I talked back to myself in an empty car.

I spoke out loud the words that have been spoken over me by The Word — by the Voice who speaks the only words that matter.

As our key verse reminds us, “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” (Ephesians 2:10 NLT).

I called out that small voice in my head with all its mean and miserable words. And in doing so I could almost hear it deflate. I addressed that no-voice with my whole attention, reciting my inheritance in Christ, my royal claim as a child of God, my significance because of Him. Because He is enough I am chosen, cherished and beloved. And I could hear the static fizzling.

I am not nothing.

You are not nothing.

We are daughters of the King. We are bought at a price. We are loved.

And there is a much greater Voice, a voice with all the rich, resonant tones of Truth so filled with love for us that unlike that devil static, He will rejoice over you with singing (Zephaniah 3:17).

With singing. Not hissing or criticizing or comparing or mocking, but with singing.

Hold onto that as we head into this New Year. That the words we say to ourselves matter because the God who is The Word says we matter. And it’s time we start believing Him.

Dear Jesus, help me see myself through Your eyes and Your words this year. Teach me kindness to myself and compassion to others. Make me a word sister to my friends and a word model to my children. Give me the gift of Your Word in my life and make them a lamp to light my way. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

TRUTH FOR TODAY:
John 1:1, “In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God.” (NLT)

Zephaniah 3:17, “For the Lord your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears.He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.” (NLT)

Psalm 119:105, “Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.” (NLT)

REFLECT AND RESPOND:
What lie have you been saying and believing about yourself this year?

What Truth from God’s Word can you use to replace this lie?

Lisa Jo BakerLisa-Jo Baker and her husband have three kids who color their lives, complicate their frequent travel, and are the reason she believes motherhood should come with a superhero cape. A child of South Africa, Lisa-Jo grew up on karoo dust, purple jacaranda trees, and the stories of Zululand. While she came to the States for college and a law degree, she stayed for the boy from Michigan who became her husband.

They make their home under the cherry blossoms just outside Washington, DC, returning to the Southern Hemisphere whenever the craving for biltong and family gets too bad. Lisa-Jo is the social media manager for DaySpring, the Christian subsidiary of Hallmark, and the community manager for their website (in)courage. Lisa-Jo has blogged for Compassion International from Guatemala, is a contributor to HuffPost Parents, and shares her everyday life lived in between countries and kids at LisaJoBaker.com. She welcomes you to connect with her.

Twitter: @lisajobaker; Facebook: www.facebook.com/lisajobaker; Blog: www.lisajobaker.com

 

This devotion was originally posted on Proverbs 31 Ministries.

Joy Fabry

Joy Fabry

Joy serves as the Digital Marketing Specialist at Tyndale House Publishers. As a digi-hostess, she enjoys interpersonal communication, email marketing, and customer journey mapping. In her spare time, Joy runs, reads, and travels around the United States.