Reflections on Faith and Community

Dear friends,

On this page, you will find weekly reflections on life and faith. My hope is that, in some way, they will prove helpful to you in your daily living. You can also find them on the church's YouTube Channel in the "Weekly Word" playlist. May God bless you on the spiritual journey.

Andrew S. Odom

08/22/2016 7:42 PM

Once it's Out There

08/22/2016 7:42 PM
08/22/2016 7:42 PM

“Now I have put my words in your mouth.” (Jeremiah 1:9)

Not too long ago, our own John Gifford gave a message to the children where he pulled out a tube of toothpaste and handed it to one of the young people.

“Squeeze some toothpaste out for me,” he told them. So they eagerly did so (kids love squeezing stuff out everywhere).

“Now,” he told them, “who can put the toothpaste back in?” Some got a concerned look on their face, trying to figure out how this could be done. Others began explaining to him that this is an impossible request. They got the point. Once it’s out there, you can’t take it back. John then proceeded to explain that our words suffer the same problem. Once we say something, there’s no taking it back.

We live in a world that tempts us to shout out whatever is on our minds at any given moment. We gripe about the driver in front of us going too slow. We post our unvarnished opinions on the Internet. We tell people what we think of them, often having never met them before. We can do better.

When the prophet Jeremiah was called by God to speak to the people, God told him a very peculiar thing, “I have put my words in your mouth.” How odd to think that God’s words might just come rolling off of our tongue, and yet we believe that very thing. We believe God can show up in the words we speak. If we really do believe that, then we need to give careful thought before saying anything to anyone. After all, once it’s out there, we can’t take it back.

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