What is Your 'All The Time?'
"Anything you eat passes through the stomach and then goes into the sewer. But the words you speak come from the heart—that’s what defiles you. For from the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, all sexual immorality, theft, lying, and slander." Matthew 15:17-19 (NLT) Have you ever said something so wrong, or so hurtful out loud for all to hear that you thought to yourself, "Where did that come from?" Well, there is an answer to that question. Jesus says that the words we speak have a place of origin and that place is our hearts. Whether we like to admit it or not, we as human beings consume. We consume food, we consume energy, and we consume ideas and words. And just like food, that "goes into the sewer," what we consume in this world around us, also must have an exit point, and that exit point is through our mouths. We have all had something come up in our minds and move to our mouths, only to hold it back so as not to hurt another, offend another, or even embarrass ourselves. Not to be gross, but in the physical, our body can only hold onto waste matter (you're welcome...Haha) for so long. Eventually, it is going to come out, and it is not going to be pretty when it does. In the same way, as long as we continue to consume ideas, images, and words (lies) that are harmful and not life-giving, they will eventually come out in our words, attitudes, and actions. When this happens, this is not a moment of condemnation, but a moment of clarification. It should cause us to think, "This is where my heart currently is, but my heart doesn't have to remain in this condition." I said recently to a bunch of older students, "Your 'all the time' has to become your 'once in a while,' and your 'once in a while' has to become your 'all the time.'" Here's what I mean... We spend a ton of time consuming all sorts of things that do not bring life, and we need to exchange and redeem that time by consuming Jesus' truth and life through the following actions: Spend time with Jesus reading His Word (Start in the Gospels - first four books of the NT Bible) and Praying (conversation from your heart - be real and honest) to Him. Jesus called Himself the Bread of Life. Go to church and prioritizing hanging with other believers who are your peers. You can do this by attending a youth group who shares about the life of Jesus and how to follow Him. Discover opportunities to serve and love others with the love and grace of Jesus you have experienced. If you will commit to doing these things, there is a good chance your heart will begin to heal. You will experience a cleansing from the inside out, and your words will start to change. Prayer Lord Jesus, forgive me for consuming the lies of this world and help me to consume Your Life instead. Help my 'once in a while' to become my 'all the time.' Amen.