I recently heard a woman talk about the scripture that says “lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely...” (Hebrews 12:1)
She talked about how some things in our life may not be sin...but are definitely weights. Things like...
- A hectic schedule – A schedule that gives you no time to breathe (so much so you are usually praying other people will cancel on you). She said God doesn’t make the schedule, you do...so fix it.
- Debt – When you’re in debt you constantly feel the walls closing in around you. She said to make a plan – a real plan to save and get out of debt.
- Unhealthy Eating – Being overweight (oh how we love to eat). I recently ate an entire bag of my precious American chocolate chips...before I could even make the cookies.
- Negativity – Complaining, whining and gossiping. She suggested a Negativity Fast. Oh dear! Can I give up my precious negativity?
Huh! I really could improve in all these areas- but the Lord is speaking to me about my negativity. It’s sad, really, that I need a fast to help me guard my words. But the truth is...I do.
I want to call a spade a spade – it’s gossip...slandering someone I know. It’s not giving my opinion, supporting a friend or seeking advice. It’s gossip. There...I’ve said it.
And complaining is just that...complaining. I’m usually trying to get my husband to do something differently with my complaining– but the truth is that whining is not pretty.
Here is my plan...
1 -- to enlist as many people as I can to join me (or at least hold me to it)
-- replace my negative words with God’s life-altering words
The first topics that have to go...
- 1. Commenting on crazy drivers (I’m sure I’d be appalled at what other drivers are saying about me within the confines of their cars...I can certainly be a little crazy myself)
- 2. People who have hurt me
- 3. Programs (and the people involved) that I feel are ineffective, ill-intentioned or just plain annoying
The truth is...I can only be negative if there is something I want more than Jesus. Many times I realize there are quite a few things I want more than Jesus (people to like me, life to be easy, pain to be minimal)....but I WANT to want Jesus more than anything.
So I begin with something small...a 7 day fast from poisonous words. I will lay it aside! I had two friends join me today...and I must admit. I got a little bit excited!
What if we did this with our closest friends...our spouses...our community?
What if we all decided not to let one word of complaint or gossip pass through our lips for 7 days? What about 40 days? What about a year? I think it would change the culture....joy would seep in, praise would sprout up, hope would abound. I want it...even if I can only grasp 7 days at a time. I’m all in!
Read what my friend Claudine has to say... http://www.karlandjulie.com/journal_may2012.asp#negativity
If you have a verse...ANY verse that has been encouraging to you...please send it my way (leave comments below) or email to firstname.lastname@example.org