Last week we studied about "Conflict" within a marriage! Because conflict is where…The many differences, hurts, sins, misunderstandings…And unmet needs come to a breaking point!...And HOW theses moments of confrontation are dealt with...Determine a path of hurt and division...Or of healing and understanding...
From that point forward.
We determined last week... That Conflict...Is inevitable...Is NOT always sinful...And can actually be a chance…To show love & understanding to your spouse like no other...IF… WE HANDLE CONFLICT IN A SCRIPTURAL WAY!
We couldn't cover it all last week...So we said that last week... We would take a look at the "TREE"...That good... Which could actually grow from proper conflict resolution...And that THIS WEEK... We would fill in the "LEAVES" on the tree!
Trees and plants are "Solar Powered”...They receive life from the SUN! (SON)…
Leaves are loaded with pigment called chlorophyll which ABSORBS the SUN...
And uses what they get FROM THE SUN (SON)…To help the tree convert water and carbon dioxide into energy... Into LIFE! (Photosynthesis)
Today we will look at what WE can do...To catch the SON...And using the SON… Help to bring LIFE and GROWTH in times of conflict... And EVEN to greatly reduce the reasons we have conflict...Rather than intimacy in the first place!
So when we are done today...Remember..."Make Like a Tree... And LEAF!"!"
The Power of Words!
John 1:1 (NKJV) BEFORE CREATION
1 In the beginning was the... (What class?)... Word...
And the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Psalm 33:6 (NKJV) METHOD OF CREATION
6 By the word of the LORD the heavens were made, And all the host of them by the breath of His mouth.
1 Peter 1:24-25 (NKJV) AFTER CREATION
24 ..."All flesh is as grass, And all the glory of man as the flower of the grass. The grass withers, And its flower falls away, 25 But the word of the LORD endures forever."
God's Words were before Creation...By His Words He Created all things... By His Words He sustains all things...By His Words He destroyed ALL things…And they are the only thing on this earth that will outlast Creation...There is an unbelievable multitude of verses, Laws, and principles in Scriptures...Which tell us of the importance and gravity of our… WORDS!
When God repeats one matter... One subject...Multiple times in multiple manners...
Who have to understand it's importance... And ACT! This is why I take so many hours preparing the "seemingly" simplest of sermons! James 3 says I will receive stricter Judgment for my WORDS! Because WORDS affect and shape our very hearts and lives!
Listen to these verses carefully:
James 3:3-6 (NKJV)
3 Indeed, we put bits in horses' mouths that they may obey us, and we turn their whole body. 4 Look also at ships: although they are so large and are driven by fierce winds, they are turned by a very small rudder wherever the pilot desires. 5 Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things. See how great a forest a little fire kindles! 6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire by hell.
Proverbs 18:21 (NKJV)
21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue...
Proverbs 16:24 (NKJV)
24 Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, Sweetness to the soul and health to the bones.
In a nutshell.... Words have more power than anything else we can wield!
It is like our own "Nuclear Arsenal!" (Especially in marriage!)
Scriptures say the tongue IS a fire...A small fire can ignite and grow to ravage an entire forest or city...But that SAME FIRE... Under control...Is the key to bringing light, warmth and sustenance as well!
Example: A hammer...
Can be used to drive nails and hold things together...Or it can be used to break and destroy!
Thor, in the Marvel movies, has an axe/hammer called "Stormbreaker!"... it came after his hammer named "Mjollnir!" For us geeks out there… In the Marvel Universe... Stormbreaker is one of the most powerful weapons existing! But... It can only be wielded by someone who proves themselves... What, fellow geeks? "WORTHY!" Why? Because of its raw power!! Which can be used to destroy... Or save you!
This is a PERFECT EXAMPLE… Of your words to your spouse! Like it or not... YOU... AND YOU ALONE... CAN LIFT THE MOST POWERFUL HAMMER…FOR OR AGAINST YOUR LOVED ONE!
Your words will do more than anyone else in the world...To heal, grow, comfort, fill with confidence, and secure…The one you love... Or your words will do more…To completely crush their spirit, their self-esteem, their worth and their security!
And the effects of our words last much, much longer than any physical scars we may receive! Often for a lifetime!
Many here STILL feel the effects... Still fight the anguish...Of words spoken to them many years ago!
But... Good, encouraging, loving words…Will also last just as long!
Words spoken by my father... My mother… My wife... That have been a well of hope for me years later!
LISTEN! You... As the husband or wife of your spouse... Are… God's Greatest Resource…To build up, heal and grow your spouse... YOU... Have more power with YOUR words to destroy or build up your spouse... Than ANY OTHER INDIVIDUAL ON THIS EARTH!
You are their LEAVES which catch the Son... And help bring nourishment to them! The MJOLLNIR (hammer) that destroys or saves!...And God WILL hold you accountable…For how you use your words to them!
And listen... Your LACK OF WORDS... Your silence and distance...
Speaks just as powerfully as the harshest words!
So first... We need to truly, truly recognize the power of our words in particular with your spouse...This power... This privilege... God has placed into our hands alone!
How do we use this power? Do we wield the hammer "Worthily?!"
Yes... You DID Mean it!
Have you ever gone too far in an argument...Said things you didn't mean to say...And wish you could go back? One of the biggest places we use our words to hurt…Is in the heat of a "discussion" with our spouse!
I hear people often say... And I have said..."You know I didn't mean those things...""I was just upset and they came out...""That's not how I really feel!"
And I understand that moment...But let's look at those moments…Very carefully and truthfully...According to Pure Scriptures...Sometimes... Not always...You DO feel that way... But don't have the courage to say till emotions are high...But... Here is the BIG PARADOX to that defense: Paradox meaning: Seemingly contradictory...But makes sense when understood
"THOSE WORDS DIDN'T REPRESENT HOW YOU FEEL..BUT... THEY DO REPRESENT THE REAL YOU!!"
Even IF those hurtful words didn't represent truth in how really feel about them...Even if you didn't mean what you said...Your WORDS STILL reveal WHERE YOU ARE IN YOUR HEART!!What scars, fears, disappointments, frustration, anger you feel... OR... What a selfish and venomous attitude you still cling to! That would allow you to go THAT FAR... To protect yourself... Defend your pride... Or win the fight
What we say at any given moment...Perfectly illustrates…WHAT IS IN OUR HEARTS AT THAT TIME... PERIOD!
Matthew 15:18 (NKJV)
18 But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and they defile a man.
Matthew 12:34-35 (NKJV)
34 For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. 35 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good things, and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things.
"Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks!" So what does our heart have an abundance of in those moments? Or for that matter… Any moment?!
Jesus goes further in this Passage to warn us of such unguarded moments!
Making it clear… That being in the "heat of an argument"…Does NOT justify hurtful or destructive words…
Matthew 12:36-37 (NKJV)
36 But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. 37 For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”
Proverbs 12:18 (ESV)
18 There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.
Proverbs 29:11 (ESV)
11 A fool gives full vent to his spirit, but a wise man quietly holds it back.
Proverbs 15:1-2 (ESV)
1 A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. 2 The tongue of the wise commends knowledge, but the mouths of fools pour out folly.
We all have moments of fleshly actions and words…But if you find that you are one who seems to regularly...By habit and consistency…Hurt or attack with your words in conflict...Going outside the boundaries of honoring another... Or even at times, truth...Scripturally speaking...You need to stop making excuses...
And look inwardly at what this reveals about the true condition of your heart!...Because some of the biggest hurts and struggles your spouse may ever have to deal with... Can often come from the "unmeant"... But very vicious words spoken in conflict!
Staying with them for months or years later! Even IF they know they weren't true...AND DO NOT USE THE EXCUSE... EVEN IN YOUR OWN HEART...
THAT YOU ARE JUST BEING HONEST AND TRUTHFUL!
Many justify this as an excuse…To be brutal or insensitive or embarrassing to others!
Some truly feel they are doing God's Will…By being sure they express everything they know is true... At ANY GIVEN MOMENT!
EXAMPLE: STOP SND THINK ABOUT IT LIKE THIS…Does a little baby need to be bathed with water? YES! Imagine: Sitting them in a warm tub and gently pouring water over their little bodies as you give them a bath!
NOW... Imagine sitting them in the yard…And hitting them with a real fire hose at full force! BOTH... ARE WASHING THE BABY WITH WATER! ARE BOTH PROPER AND SINLESS?!! STOP AND GET THIS POINT: There is a time, a way, and a place for all truth to be spoken!!
Ecclesiastes 3:1 (ESV)
1 For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven… 7 a time to tear, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak…
Truth spoken in a wrong time or wrong way... Is not only hurtful and destructive... But Wrong...Because our words are to be used to lift up, and heal others... If the time is wrong... The audience is wrong... Or the heart is not ready...
We often will do just the opposite of heal or help! Sometimes it is our own desire to feel righteous or justified...That makes us speak "real truth" at a "really inopportune" moment!
Galatians 6:1 (NKJV)
1 Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted.
Ephesians 4:1-2, 15 (ESV)
1 I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, 2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, 15 Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ,
2 Timothy 2:24-26 (ESV)
24 And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, 25 correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, 26 and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.
Does Christ blast you with every sin... Every problem... Every immaturity...
You now have as a believer... All at once? JUST BECAUSE ITS TRUTH!? NO! He gently leads and grows you into understanding...He patiently reveals Truth to you so you may mature!
EXAMINATION TIME: Stop a moment with me now…THINK ABOUT THE WORDS YOU USE WITH OTHERS...EVEN WHEN NOT IN CONFLICT...
SCRIPTURES SAY THEY REVEAL SO MUCH YOUR TRUE HEART!!!
If many of your words always seem about YOU...
So is the heart!
If many of your words always seem critical or harsh...
So is the heart!
If many of your words always seem negative & offended...
So is the heart!
If many of your words always seem sarcastic & accusing...
So is the heart!
If many of your words seem controlling & demanding...
So is the heart!
If you never have words..But act distant & withdrawn...
So is the heart!
IF MANY OF YOUR WORDS ARE LOVING & UPLIFTING...
SO IS THE HEART!
LISTEN... THIS IS BIG... THIS IS THE MAJOR KEY TO IT ALL!! You CANNOT simply bite your tongue... Or stifle yourself...Or work on your ways...IF the tongue TRULY REFLECTS THE HEART...WHAT… MUST YOU REALIZE IS IN NEED OF CHANGING?! THE HEART!
James 3:11-12 (NKJV)
11 Does a spring send forth fresh water and bitter from the same opening? 12 Can a fig tree, my brethren, bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Thus no spring yields both salt water and fresh.
Come to the realization…That attacks, accusations, mean words and hurtful intentions... Which CONSTANTLY SURFACE IN CONFLICT OR OTHER TIMES...Are NOT OK... And NOT just the way you handle things...BUT TRUE REPRESENTATIONS OF WHAT IS HAPPENING IN THE HEART!AND MUST BE DEALT WITH...
Use Your Words!
Whether in conflict or in everyday living...It is your responsibility... Your privilege...To use your words of intimate influence...To give your mate self-worth, growth, security and love!...Again in general... It is strongly proven through many years of research...
Women most need a show of acceptance, cherishing, desire and security...And men most need a show of admiration, respect, trust, confidence...Add to this... The very specific knowledge that only YOU may have...Of their abuse, fears, weaknesses and sin...And YOU ALONE... Have the power to touch them like no other on earth!
CRITICISM IS THE NUMBER ONE FACTOR IN PREDICTING DIVORCE! GET THAT?!
I watch a number of people purposefully use their skill with words... And their wisdom...To manipulate, control or get their way! Full well knowing...
They are intimidating or being overbearing and rude!
LISTEN AND LISTEN WELL...
ONE- This is the opposite of everything Christ teaches us about love, selflessness and respect...
TWO- Don't think you're succeeding…Just because of your cunningness and wisdom...You are succeeding…Because of your selfishness and audacity!
Many other people around you could possibly succeed the same way...But they are not willing to force their own way in selfish manipulation or pressure!
I am not the sharpest tool in the shed...But before Christ taught me a lesson on humility and love... I could quickly hurt you or push you verbally when poked! And I was SEVERELY WRONG IN DOING SO!
God is not interested in your incredible manipulative abilities...He's interested in your heart for others! “So you can GET your way… And DRIVE God away!”
Proverbs 15:18 (NKJV)
28 The heart of the righteous studies how to answer, But the mouth of the wicked pours forth evil.
Use your words to build your spouse up... As only you know how... In ALL areas and situation! To their face... When in conflict... And in everyday living...In the presence of others...And behind their backs... When alone with others!Understand that your words ARE truly a reflection of your heart...And stop excusing and justifying YOUR reactions!
PRAY and TRUST God…To work on your problems... And your spouse's!
Trusting HIM... Truly... To bring change... In patience and love!
And watch your spouse... Your relationship transform...In the Power and Mercy of Christ!
Then…Wield your hammer... Your words... With "Worthiness!"
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