Your mouth can block your blessings. Simple but strong fact that can change your life.
Some of the hardest people to be around are those who are so full of negativity and doom that just spending time in their presence can leach your joy. As painful as that sounds, we all know someone that always have a chipped glass… they can’t even focus on whether it’s half full or half empty… they can’t see past that chip marring the vessel.
Maybe you are the person in question… maybe your first instinct is to find all the ways that something won’t work or all the reasons someone will say no before you even consider the positive.
In this situation how do you overcome? Understanding the power of the tongue is a huge start. When my girls were littles, I would find myself coaching them, “God gave you two hears and one mouth… because you are supposed to listen twice as much as you talk”. Irony of that is that it would take me almost forty years on this earth to learn that lesson myself and just shut my face.
Proverbs 21:18 is a great place to start, “He who guards his mouth and his tongue keeps himself from calamity”. I don’t know about you, but calamity is not something I want or need in my already crazy life. I have enough daily anxieties, stress, drama, and etc that I don’t need to add calamity (also known as woe, disaster, tragedy, tribulation, crisis, adversity, and my personal favorite… blight).
Growing up I had this one distant relative who was eccentric, not in a weird “fill my house with dead animals and howl at the moon” kind of way but a fun and dramatic way. If people were set to run on a number between one and ten, she was forever set at a fourteen. Her response to anything was to immediately make the sign of the cross and proclaim “Jesus, Joseph and Mary”. As an adult, I recognize that it’s a Catholic phrase to comment on great things… be it great stressful things, great big bad things or great good things. However as a kid growing up firmly in the Baptist bible belt, this was foreign and startlingly funny as the same time.
“Aunt Jo” was on to something though. If we can’t watch what is coming out of our mouth, then we are sunk before we even start. How in the world are we expecting good things to happen to us and around us when we are negating it right off the bat?
Besides biting our lip and swallowing those blessing blockers, what can we do? We can remember things that push the negatives back. 2 Timothy 1:7 means that our negative feelings don’t come from God so we don’t have to give them any weight. 1 Peter 5:7 is a reminder that we can hand over all those negatives to him and he’ll take them.
A key way to change our focus is to change the way we look at each and every day. We start the day with the a blaring alarm and a foreboding cascade of all the action items on our daily list that will come tumbling down as soon as we get out of bed. So what if we choose to change the initial start of our day? Change the very beginning of it all… start with a prayer. Taking a page from Aunt Jo, whether things are good or bad, my first impulse is to go to HIM in thanks.
Take it all to him. Start your day thanking him for what is going right and asking his guidance for what is going wrong. Vent your frustrations to him and plot out your next steps. The one key to avoid is falling into the negative pit… letting that cloying gloom still back into your mindset, your words or your thoughts.
Catch yourself rebuking the negative anytime it rears its head. Speak directly to that negativity. Take those thoughts to task and remind yourself that each day is a new gift and a fresh start. Scatter positive reminders throughout your day… postits, alarms on your phone… invest in your positivity.
Kalynn Brazeal is a conservative, Christian wife/mom/country girl carrying around an MBA, several decades of business experience and a strong opinion. Dividing her time between Grand Lake and Colorado, she continues to share her column on life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness and cake. She can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.