June 27

I the Lord will speak the word that I speak, and it will be fulfilled.  Ezekiel 12:25

 

The centurion said to Jesus, “Only speak the word, and my servant will be healed.”  Matthew 8:8

 

Remember the saying? “Sticks and stones will break my bones but words will never hurt me!”  Spoken by kids who probably didn’t believe it, or told to those kids by their parents.  This phrase is not exactly true or even very comforting when words have been hurtful.  Of course words can hurt, they can be very powerful:  a child (or adult) who is ridiculed because of a perceived difference, someone saying they no longer love you, words that are yelled in anger. Words can also be supportive, helpful, and healing. Most of us hear many words of gentleness and peace and of love every day.  

 

How do our words compare with those that God speaks? If our very words can wound someone, what can those of God do? God can speak very powerful words.  His word brought Creation into being, land and sea, plants and animals and people too. The air we breathe, the water we drink and the food that grows to nourish us. The words He speaks will be fulfilled – in Ezekiel, they are words of warning. 

 

The centurion apparently knows what power words can have.  He may not know about God, or even really about Jesus as the Son of God but he sees something in Jesus’ power. He asks for nothing more than a spoken word.  No magic potions, no healing touches, he doesn’t even ask Jesus to come see the servant.   One spoken word and healing can occur. Words of gentleness, concern and care are something we all can speak or write.

 

We have a world created by the Word; through word alone our world was created and is still created daily.  There are new people born, and newly faithful people created.  Our part? To listen to God’s word, focus on it, and spread it among all of Creation. 

 

Dear Lord, in the beginning you spoke and Creation sprang to life.  Your Word has been moving ever since, calling forth life and bringing your children to faith.  Teach our hearts to yearn for the music of your Word that can renew us every day.  Help us to tune out the other voices in the world and listen to you alone. Help us speak gentle words of caring and concern to those around us. In Jesus’ name, Amen

 

Chris Gabel