"Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen." Ephesians 4:29
Yesterday, we began a conversation about Christian living. As Christ followers, we have been called and equipped to live differently than we used to live. 1 John 4:8 says, "God is love." In Ephesians, Paul warns us to be careful in the way we speak and the way we act. He tells us that the hardening of our hearts is what causes conflict, division, impurity, and the like. God spoke to Ezekiel in Ezekiel 11. He told him that He would replace our hearts of stone with hearts of flesh. Solomon warned his sons in Proverbs 4:23, "Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.
Have you ever said something ugly or demeaning to someone else? Has someone ever said anything to you that was ugly or demeaning. In Matthew 12:34-35, Jesus was speaking to the Pharisees and said something very powerful: "You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him." That is why Paul warned us in Ephesians about our hardened hearts. As Christ followers, we must allow God to continue touching and filling our hearts with His love. It must be stored inside of us so that when we speak and when we act, love is what comes out! Christian living begins with and continues with God's love in our hearts. And God's love in our hearts is what we must show others and give others! That is Christian living...out loud and on purpose!