“Words. Do you fully understand their power? Can any of us really grasp the mighty force behind the things we say? Do we stop and think before we speak, considering the potency of the phrases we utter?” (Joni Eareckson Tada).
Next year, maybe earlier, Australia will facing a national election. We are always bombarded with promises with the two major political parties trying to outdo each other by telling the voters what they can do for the country. And don’t they love slogans! They hammer them home at every opportunity. One party says with them Australia will be moving forward and the other promises real action. They all suggest that their policies will be fair, or fairer. Of course the world-wide pandemic has raised a new crop of promises, as had the current issue of climate change and closed international borders. Friends in the United States endured slogans, undertakings and promises with a Presidential election a few months ago.
In reality what do such promises and undertakings mean? They are just words to be thrown about. And they lack substance. The Apostle Peter was concerned about this when in his first letter he said: “If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” (1 Pet. 4:11).
What Australia, America and the world, really need is not empty promises and throw away words but a deep sense of responsibility and passion. We live in a world of despair and calamity. As Peter went on to say: “The end of all things is near. Therefore be clear minded and self-controlled so that you can pray. Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.” (1 Peter 4:7-10).
Elections, whenever they happen, will come at a time when the issues of public morality and personal security feature strongly in the manifesto of political parties. This is nothing new. Peter speaks strongly about such things and refers to human desires rather than the will of God. Two thousand years ago debauchery, lust, drunkedness and idolatry were an issue (sounds familiar), and Peter’s words were meant to draw attention to the need to live according to the will of God.
Sometimes it seems that our many words are more an expression of our doubt than of our faith. It is as if we are not sure that God’s Spirit can touch the hearts of people. We are God’s hands and feet and we have to convince others of His power by speaking the words of God.
Please pray for Australia and have a good week, Pastor Ron Clarke
Optional Bible reading; 1 Peter 4:1-11.
This is one of a series of weekly messages of encouragement, now in its twenty-sixth year, originating from Gympie, Fraser Coast, Queensland, Australia. A companion Bible study page is available each week. To subscribe via email send to firstname.lastname@example.org with the words ‘Subscribe Word (or) Subscribe Word & Study’. Our ministry is free and emailing lists are confidential. Tell a friend or why not put a note in your church newsletter or pew sheet about this ministry – we welcome new subscriptions. Pastor Ron Clarke OAM Word for the Week Mbl.: +61 488 424 321