When I Said Less, He Did More!posted on August 15th, 2012 / by Marissa Star / 7 Comments
When God put it on my heart to write about this hole in our faces–you know, the hole that words come out of–I thought, “Really Lord? Me? I get to talk about the beauty of holding one’s tongue? You know who this is right?! Your girl with the special talent to be the one still talking (loudly) when the room goes silent, um … talking to my girlfriends about a sale at our favorite store and how much I love my new pink bra! Umm … Yeah, that would be me Lord!”
And that would be only one example. I am the queen of trying to rein back my words in mid-air after they come flying out of my mouth without thinking. I can see myself in slow motion reaching out with my hands for them saying, “Come back to me … come back to me.” But NO, of course they go and land on the ears of their hearers leaving me with nothing but huge eyeballs staring back at me.
One of my favorite “BIG GULP” moments is when I was pregnant with our first child, Caleb, and my due date was Nov.5th. One of my big prayers was that he would not come early and be born on Oct. 31st. I just thought that THAT would be horrible. During this time my husband was invited by a Worship Pastor friend to play electric guitar during a worship service at their church. After practice Yuri invited me up to the stage to meet everyone. Being just one month away from having our first baby everyone asked what our due date was. I started chatting with the Worship Pastor’s wife about how it was Nov. 5th and I was just hoping and praying he wouldn’t come early because I just didn’t want a Halloween baby. Then there was a moment of silence, the kind that nudges you; you know let’s you know you shouldn’t have been so opinionated. She graciously tells me her husband’s (the Worship Pastor’s) birthday is on Oct. 31st.
Oh, but it gets better; not only is it his birthday but she also lets me know it’s the bass player’s birthday as well. So not just one–there were two Halloween babies that love Jesus on the worship team that night. Mercy. I thought, “Oh JESUS! Help me PLEEASE!!! Because–oops, I did it again!” And well, we all have times we wished we had kept our mouth shut, that we would have taken just a few more moments to process the words that would come out of our mouths instead of recovering from another instance of verbal regret while we wipe our faces with humble pie.
Now this is just a silly story, an embarrassing moment that might not have happened if I had stopped to consider that in such a large world someone was bound to have been born on Halloween and that they might just be in that room. But what I really feel like God has put on my heart to talk about is trusting God with our words through the lack of them. So often we go through difficult circumstances, situations and challenges in our lives and we feel that in some way we have been misunderstood, judged, accused, and or even rejected by or due to the prior. We want to defend ourselves (or fix it) with our words. We want to talk to other people about it, seeking validation. This kind of validation usually only lasts the length of the conversation and sometimes can border on gossip if details are still unknown or closure is looming. The Word of God says to “Keep and guard your heart with all vigilance and above all that you guard, for out of it flow the springs of life” (Proverbs 4:23). It also asks us to believe the best of people; 1 Corinthians 13:7 says, “Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening].” Ultimately, it’s asking you to believe the best of all people–even the ones that have hurt you.
I challenge you: when seeking validation, seek God’s validation. Only what He says about you and your situation will give you the strength to stand strong with integrity in Him. Whatever you have gone through or are going through, I want you to be encouraged; God vindicates! He rescues! He defends! He protects! He heals! And ultimately … He can be trusted!
Concerning this hole in our faces, I have come to learn … less is more. What do I mean by that? I mean the less we say, the more God can do!
I want to share my story of how trusting God by saying less has changed my world and gave me the opportunity to see and experience the tangibility of His faithfulness. I went through a situation that touched many relationships in my life, people I loved. Relationships were tested and the fire was there to burn up what wasn’t God. It was painful. It felt lonely at times. Anger was there too, holding up her “Why me?!” sign. I wanted with everything in me to defend myself. I wanted to fix it and make it go away. Because surely I could fix it, I could give more, I could love more, I could make allowances more … except when I would go to pick up the phone the Holy Spirit would say “Don’t do it!” on the inside of me. I didn’t understand. I asked, “Why would you not want me to fix it? If they just heard me out they would see … I could make it better.” I will never forget what the Holy Spirit said to me, “Marissa, go ahead make the phone calls. Put a band-aid on it with your words and it will be fixed the best it can be with your efforts. I’ll let you do it and what you get is what you get and that’s it. But if you will trust me and say nothing, I’ll change you, I’ll change them, I’ll change the situation and cause every angle of the situation to bear fruit. Fruit that lasts.”
In that moment I was presented with a choice. I would be a liar if I didn’t say that taking care of it myself wasn’t a strong temptation. I was so desperate for the hurt to end. The pain of being misunderstood, the sting of being wrongly judged, the ache of rejection, they called out for a quick fix and false comfort. This is where choice is a powerful agent: we can choose to jump ahead of God and try to fix situations/people with our words or even go the opposite direction into bitterness by numbing our feelings with worldly forms of anesthesia as simple as entertainment to such destructive things as drugs and alcohol. I chose to let my God be my God even if this choice meant I would have to hurt a little longer while I learned to depend on Him. The job description of God as written by Him (found all through the Bible) says,
He is a God that He cares for us: “Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.” (1 Peter 5:7)
He is a God that fights for us: “One man of you shall put to flight a thousand, for it is the Lord your God Who fights for you, as He promised you.” (Joshua 23:10)
He is a God that vindicates His own: “For the Lord will judge and vindicate His people, and He will delay His judgments [manifesting His righteousness and mercy] and take into favor His servants [those who meet His terms of separation unto Him].” (Psalm 134:14)
During this challenging period of time I was all up in the Psalms, reading everyday words of hope and life. Some days even printing them out and sleeping with them. I couldn’t get close enough to them; I needed them to be the truth of my heart. In those days I felt like King David and I were best friends. His words were as dramatic as I felt, and God used them to show me His steadfast love for me.
Life is not without pain, and pain usually puts the pressure on our lives to bring about one of two things: bitterness or change. As you’re reading this, choose change! I made a choice to anchor myself in love, which was my position in Christ daily, to choose LOVE! I remember being in a Target parking lot and that sneaky little devil started accusing these people to me in my head and I almost didn’t catch him! I pointed my little finger and started waving it around (probably looking nuts) and said, “Stop accusing the people I love to me!” And with those words I dug my toes into the sands of His faithfulness. I am here to tell you … He IS faithful! He restores. It may not be overnight in your world; it sure wasn’t in mine.
I gave Him a hurting heart and He cultivated love in it. I was changed! He did a work in the people I love restoring to us even closer relationships where He is Lord. Their hearts were changed! The situation changed, and continues to bear fruit! He said it and He DID IT! There is a faithfulness that can be felt when you walk in the fulfillment of His promises.
Take courage, He sees you. He wants you to be an overcomer in every area of your world! You don’t have to do it alone. He wants to fight your battles … let Him!! I hope this is an encouragement of how powerful He wants to be in our lives when we yield to Him even when it hurts. Like hurts a lot. So it shall be one of the greatest testimonies of my heart … when I said less, He did more!
I thank You Lord, that in a world full of challenges of the human heart kind, You don’t waver in Your love for me. You care for me, You want to fight for me and vindicate me as I choose to let my words take the back seat to Your perfect plan of love. Lord, empower me by Your Holy Spirit to choose love in the face of pain and enticing bitterness … help me to believe the best of people in my life even if I don’t see it. Show me who You say they are … I’ll believe You, God. I’m grateful for Your strong hands that hold the earth and yet You hold and pastor my heart. I love You … In Jesus’ name, Amen!
Always carrying you in my heart and with GREAT Love, ~Ris