God has been challenging me this week on how I speak to myself. He pointed out that at work and in my personal life most of my sentences start with"I am sorry but" or "this might sound silly".
God showed me that I was opening up the atmosphere for people to prejudge my words – and me– before I had even said anything. Initially, I wrote this off as something that was small and "to be worked on", but then as I began to ask God, it became more significant.
Over the years my family have said that I need to stop apologising and start to believe in myself. I have to choose to be kind to myself, not just to others. As I think on this I am reminded of what my pastor said once: we are told that if we want to have a larger life, we need to be 'kind'. He shouted it many times from the stage, but why have I not listened and taken action?
I believe that God chooses seasons that He wants us to walk through, so this feels like the right time to be hearing and working on my words and my listening. But I am still in transition about how important my words are in my life – surely they are just words?
We know that we are made in the image of God, as shown in Genesis. God started the universe through the power of His speech – this means that our words have power and purpose attached to them. God's word has the power to heal – Psalm 107 verse 20 says "He [God]sent out His word and healed them". This verse struck me. The word of God is power that is matched by intention.
God sought to heal and He had the capability to do it. If God wants to visit and heal me then His word alone is the power I need. Equally what you speak over yourself will materialize.
I struggle with speaking positive words in my life; this does not mean that suddenly my negative words have less power. Perhaps if anything they have more because they are the only words that are spoken. I feel frustrated when I respond positively to a sermon in church that talks about the power of words but then fail to apply that to my life.
How I listen
As I think over what has happened this week, God revealed that I need to improve how I listen, both to him and to others around me, – even though it seemed incongruous with my gift for the prophetic.
We choose our level of understanding and receptiveness. It is not an accident. Have you ever said something negative, knowing that it was not how God saw you? It is possible to write yourself out of a larger and freer life through your words.
There has been a positive and fighting spirit that has woken up inside of me. I have chosen to declare truth, rather than believe words that are contrary to how God sees me. When I feel negative thoughts taking over my brain I choose to declare that I do not agree with it. When we agree with something in our spirit it has the power to change the atmosphere around us. What an opportunity!
How do I come to terms with the journey of change that seems like it is both forwards and backwards? We are all walking the walk, with both victories and challenges. The big blockage for me is about presuming that I will never understand, or that things will never change. I need to know that I "can hear" and that my brain can begin the process of healing itself from the words that I have spoken and that others have spoken over me.
Psalm 139 talks about the fact that God perceives our thoughts from afar. God bothers to perceive what we are thinking about when he knows every detail of our lives anyway... Wow. What an amazing and incredible God we have the privilege of knowing. I feel so blessed, knowing that God cares for me this much that he wants to work on my listening and hearing skills.
I am excited about the growth that can happen and what this might mean for my relationship with God, with my family and friends, with my future spouse and for my career. When God whispers gently to you, be assured and get excited. When God challenges – say Hallelujah, sit up and listen.
Rosie Robinson resides in Manchester where, in between feeding herself coffee and ice cream she works for an international financial services organisation. She attends a lively church called !Audacious, enjoys reading, running and watching films and discovering life with Jesus.
Rosie Robinson's previous articles may be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/rosie-robinson.html