June 1, 2021

 

“Whatever (word) comes out of the mouth comes from the heart, and this is what defiles and dishonors the man.”—Matthew 15:18 (AMP)

This message spoken by Jesus was directed at the Pharisees who were all about rules, and who had come to challenge Jesus. These men’s hearts were not filled with love but with an adherence to tradition. Thus, the words they spoke were filled with condemnation.

Matthew 15:18 really hit home with me, but for a different reason. This morning, the verse caused me to reflect on the truth of it as it pertained to my life.

 

I used to be a cusser. Oh my, the words that flew out of my mouth I am ashamed to even think about. It’s hard to believe I was a faithful church-goer even then. I didn’t cuss in church, though, as that would have been against the rules. Of course, at the time I didn’t see myself as a Pharisee. Besides, I reasoned,  Aren’t I a good person otherwise?

Thank heavens God delivered me from that error in thinking years ago, and this morning’s scripture and the Holy Spirit helped me understand what was in my heart back then.

You see, I never felt loved as a child. Even after I was married and had two children who loved me, I never felt loved. Thus, I was an angry person spewing swear words. I slammed doors, tipped over chairs, basically demonstrating my anger.

I had no awareness of the relevance of Matthew 15:18—that I was defiling and dishonoring myself through words that emanated from my wounded heart.

 

Truth of the Word in Titus 3:3-7 explains how I am no longer that person.

“At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through  the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.” (NIV)

Simply put, God blessed me with His mercy.

  • It was not following rules that made me new.
  • It was not attending church or helping others that made me clean—it was only God’s mercy that washed me and set me free the moment I accepted Jesus as Lord of my life. In short, at that moment I no longer had a “need” to swear, as God had filled me with His love and acceptance. Now the words that came from my mouth reflected the love in my heart.

A few years after I asked Jesus into my heart, my husband said to me, “You cuss all the time.”

Startled, I replied, “I haven’t taken a swear word in vain for at least four years.”

He stopped and thought. “I guess you’re right.”

What that said to me is even though I had changed, my past actions were not easily forgotten by others. Thanks be to God, He doesn’t remember my sins once He has forgiven them.

“You will be merciful to us once again. You will trample our sins underfoot and send them to the bottom of the sea!”—Micah 7:19 (GNB)

 

Prayer:     Thank you, Father God, for your mercy and the changes I have experienced and continue to experience through YOUR work in  me.

Thought for the Day:  “God hears and sees you. He loves you beyond measure and has your deliverance ready. As soon as you come to Him.”