I’ve been reading through the Psalms lately. They are a treasure trove of emotion, and usually when I read a Psalm I can quickly find a passage that helps me pray that feeling I didn’t know how to express to God otherwise. I love how often God lets David question Him! I just have to remind myself that even when David laments, he ends the psalm with a verse of thanks and acknowledgement of God’s power. I’m pretty good at the lamenting part; it’s the trust at the end that always gets me.
Today, I was looking for something to inspire my writing for the week. Verse two instantly jumped out at me: “He who… speaks truth in his heart.” Isn’t that what writing is all about? We write to speak truth about the world we see around us. We write to spark a little hope in the darkness. Uncertainty rolls in from all sides like a black haze, so we reach for that small candle in front of us and hope that God will blow away a little smoke so the path becomes clear.
So, how do we find this truth to clear the path? According to Psalm 15, the one “who speaks truth” is close to God; he “sojourn[s] in [God’s] tent” and “dwell[s] on [God’s] holy hill.” The source of the speaker’s truth is God and a direct relationship with Him. As Christians following God after Jesus’ death and resurrection, we believe that we can find God in the Bible and in His Holy Spirit dwelling among us.
Dwelling among us. This, to me, is community. I would not have made it through the black haze of uncertainty without my friends and family putting candles of truth in front of me to light the way. Community is a gift, and if we each seek God’s truth for our own hearts, we can speak truth over others’ hearts. We become God’s hands and feet in spreading hope (1 Corinthians 12:27.)
One of these dear friends explained it to me this way: am I speaking words of life, or am I speaking words of death? Am I routinely expecting the worst, or do I prayerfully hope for God’s restoration and healing? To make this concept even harder, she reminded me that this concept is internal. Am I speaking words of life over my life, or am I speaking death into it?
I have learned a lot about self talk in the past 6 months, but this friend put it the most succinctly for my brain. If I want to “speak truth” in my writing and in my community, it has to start “in my heart.” There’s my kick in the rear to keep my Bible open and prayers flowing for the week!