‘Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity.’ 1 Timothy 4:12 NKJV
A very important part of the Christian faith is community. It is not God’s design for us to live the Christian life in isolation (Hebrews 10:25). One prominent thing about community is influence, we are influenced by whom we spend time with and we also influence them. You might’ve noticed that when you spend time with a new friend or start a new relationship you begin to pick up each other’s mannerisms and habits.
We must be conscious about this influence and seek to positively influence other believers around us. Paul in our anchor scripture was admonishing Timothy, his spiritual son, to be faithful in teaching the Scriptures, and also be a worthy practical example in various aspects.
One aspect Paul mentions for Timothy to be an example is in words. As a believer, your words are not ordinary and should always reflect your identity in Christ. One way you can shape your words is by renewing your mind.
When you received the life of Christ at the moment you believed, you became one with God. This transformation occurred immediately in your spirit but You still have to renew your mind daily with the Word of God (Romans 12:2). Without proper renewal of your mind, you will have inconsistencies in your walk with God.
This mind renewal comes by the influence of the Holy Spirit in the life of a believer. When you yield to the work of the Holy Spirit, it will change what you do, how you think and even your desires (Philipains 2:13). When you begin to think the way God thinks it will reflect in every area of your life including how you speak.
Words can build up or tear down, so you should also strive to say words that are full of life to people around you. Let your words always be gracious so that you know how to speak to different individuals. Your words as a Christian should bring life to people. They should be words that give encouragement (Ephesians 4:29).
Similarly, your utterances should come from a place of love to others. Before speaking, check the motive of your heart and be sure you are speaking from a place of love. Remember that God is love and as His imitators, love should be evident in our words (1 John 4:16).
Finally, you should be cautious with your words. Just as it is stated in Ephesians 5:4, obscenity, foolish talking, and coarse jesting, should not be found in your life.
Dear believer, your words are instruments to shape lives, yours and that of others. From today, let your words always reflect your identity in Christ.
DO THIS: Be intentional with your words, practice being slow to speak and choose your words wisely.
Bible Reading Plan:1 Kings 10-11; 2 Chronicles 9