CONGRATULATIONS to Janette from Janette’s Sage. She is the winner of my Valentine’s give away. For those of you who do not know Janette, (but I think most of us do!) she is an absolutely delightful, spirit filled woman who blesses me every time I visit her blog (which is pretty much any time she posts something new) She is wise, funny, creative, and loving and she is definitely one of my very favorite friends to visit in blogland. So if you don’t know Janette, pop by for a visit and I KNOW you’ll be glad you did. Now I have to tell you that while Janette did win my BIG giveaway (it’s really not that big Janette, haha ~ but there is a surprise or two besides the coasters) I decided that since I had soo much Valentine fabric that I just couldn’t resist, that I would just go ahead a make up one extra set as well. Sooo, Cindy from Letters From Midlife has won that set. Congratulations to you! Now Cindy, (for those of you who don’t know her) is a wonderful Christian woman whose well written blog is always a blessing to me. She is also VERY creative and talented and makes beautiful gift cards and gift tags that she sells at her Etsy shop. I consider Cindy a kindred spirit in many ways. It was harder for me to do a giveaway then I thought it might be as I kind of wanted everyone to win, haha. If I had my way I would have picked you all. Anyway ladies, send me your addresses in an email, and I will get those off to you as soon as I can.
And then I wanted to mention that I have been a fan and an avid reader of Karen Kingsbury for quite a while now. I just love the way she writes. Her stories and style of writing have always seemed to really touch my heart. Can’t tell you how many of her books I have cried my way through. Well, a few months back I had purchased two in her new Bailey Flanigan series but for some reason or another had never gotten around to reading them. Well, since New Years I have read them both and was very excited to find out that there are two more in the series; actually only 1 is available now, and the other will come out in the spring. I purchased book 3 today! YAY!! I am soo looking forward to reading that. I also purchased a new Bible. I felt kind of wild, haha; but here are my thoughts on that. A few years ago after I lost (I won’t go into that sad story now) the Bible that I had carried for years and years, I had decided I wanted to get a small Bible that I could just carry around in my purse if I wanted to, so that I would never be without it, should I need it. Seemed like a wonderful idea. However, since the time I purchased that it has become harder and harder for me to read the tiny print even with my reading glasses on of course. I have found myself straining and struggling. So I decided I needed to break down and get myself a LARGE print Bible. I quickly found out most of them were HUGE!! Too heavy to lay in bed reading, or to tote around easily, BUT! The sweet gal at the store helped me to find a smaller type one that I think will be just perfect. I am soo pleased for some reason.
And then, I wanted to tell you about the thoughts I have had as I have been studying through the book of James in my devotional time. Oh, and btw, it certainly works out well that my DIL will be teaching this book at the women’s Bible study group when it starts back up in February. It will all be very fresh in my mind. : ) But I regress….I have always loved the book of James. I have read it soo many times of course that I could never really count them up. Pastor Dave from our old church taught for several months on the book as well and I remember it well. But I love how no matter how familiar some scripture is to you, the Lord finds a way to bring a new insight or thought to your mind; or sometimes just another focus. Now truthfully of course this is not a new thought for me, but rather a never ending challenge and struggle; the power of the tongue.
James 3:8 But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.
What others say to us and what we say to others can last a VERY long time, for both good or for evil. The casual sarcastic or critical remark can inflict a lasting injury on another person. Proverbs also speaks of the person who doesn’t consider the destructive power of his words.
Proverbs 26:18-19 Like a madman who throws firebrands, arrows, and death, is the man who deceives his neighbor and says, “I was only joking!”
WOW…I have been dwelling all day on how many times I have been guilty of that. The fire of the tongue has been used to burn many. Children are told, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me.” But that child’s rhyme isn’t really true. The pain of word spoken against us can hurt us for a lifetime, long after a broken bone has healed.
James goes to talk about the contradictory character of the tongue as well. How the very thing that can spit gossip, cursing, and hurtful remarks, can also bless God and others. The well-timed encouragement or compliment can inspire someone for the rest of their life. I love these next couple of verses.
Proverbs 16:24 Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the bones.
Proverbs 12:25 Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression, but a good word makes it glad.
I guess what I am trying to say here is how much more I want to focus on what I say. And truthfully what I write for others to read as well. The ONLY one with the power to control the tongue is the Holy Spirit. So I am going to make that a part of my daily prayers from now on. I want my tongue to bless others and spread the sweetness of Jesus. I have (at times) prided myself (always a mistake) with being able to “speak my mind”. Well I read today in a commentary, “If your talent is to speak your mind ~ God probably wouldn’t mind if you buried that talent.” A VERY good idea!
Hope you all have a wonderful week-end!
P.S. The girls won last tonight! The losing streak has been broken! YAY Mom!!