Saying Have a nice day to someone sounds friendly, but saying have a nice next twenty-four hours sounds threatening.
We really need to be careful with what we say.
Especially if you are sharing a word from the Lord.
Tammy (not her real name) was with someone she respected and received a word from the Lord. Months later she was talking to me about the encounter at a Bible study I was leading.
"She's a very Godly woman and she knows things," Tammy said. "She told me God said something bad was going to happen to me, something so horrible that she wouldn't even tell me what it was, but it was going to happen and it was going to be in my house."
Tammy was obviously shaken, and with good reason.
Taken back, I interrupted, "Let's stop for a minute and talk about this because I don't think this was from God."
"But she's a Godly woman, she tells people things all the time. I've been so scared, every day, wondering if this was going to be the day that the horrible thing happens."
"When did she tell you this?"
"Last June," she said.
I quickly calculated that it had been seven months. This sweet woman had been living in fear daily for seven months.
"Tammy, God does not operate like this. He is not the author of fear or confusion, He will never tell you something that will fill you with fear. Fear and confusion are tricks of the enemy," I said.
Then I told her we were going to pray for her. During the prayer I broke the curse that was over her, prayed for safety, prayed for peace in her mind, and for freedom of the fear that was controlling her.
She was crying as we said amen.
If this Godly woman truly had a word from the Lord it would not have put fear into Tammy's heart. When we receive words like this we need to hold them in one hand while we hold the Bible in the other and compare the two. God will never contradict His Word (the Bible). A true word from the Lord will awaken something inside of you, it feels like a distant memory coming to life, or will confirm something God has already been telling you. This is why it's important to speak with Him on a daily basis.
We need to learn His voice. Learn to discern the difference between His voice and our desires.
Sometimes our desires can be so deep that they feel like His voice. This is where we need to be careful.
I have felt this in my own life. Knowing that God had this greatbigthing for me. Something so wonderful that my desire for it clouded my vision, it was all I could see and I knew for sure that He was going to give it to me.
But He didn't. I wasn't hearing His voice, I was listening to my desire.
I see this happen often and there are two ways we can respond.
We can tell everyone what God is going to do because He told me.
Or we can keep it to ourselves and do what Mary did after the angel told her she was going to be the mother of Jesus,
"But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart." Luke 2:19 (NIV)
I'm glad I took my cue from Mary and kept my thoughts to myself instead of sharing them. This kept me from feeling shameful and from giving the voice of God a bad name.
The world is full of people who think we are wishy-washy. Let's not give them reason to think so. A prayer journal is a good way to keep track of what God is truly telling us. Write it down and then after it comes to pass, then share it with people. How much better is it to be able to share the things God truly is doing than the things we wish for Him to do.
I saw Tammy a few weeks later and asked how she was, she looked a little confused and asked what I was talking about. I reminded her of the night we prayed for her. She looked at me and said, "I forgot all about it, the fear was gone after we prayed and I haven't remembered it since."
Tammy found freedom in my family room that night, freedom from someone's careless words.
Oh be careful little mouth what you say.....
The world is watching, be the light.