Fruit of our Lips

by Pastor Dan

A few years ago, I attended a funeral for a friend of mine.  My friend was a very well-to-do person.  In terms of money and influence in the business world, you would say that this person was a success.  Many people from the outside looking in would desire to emulate their accomplishments.  As I talked with some of his children prior to the funeral, we began talking about his relationship with his children and grandchildren.  The idea began to surface about how that might be the focus of the funeral.  As I witnessed this revelation and saw it come to fruition, my heart began to be filled with peace, and you could see it on those in the family who shared.  There was a choice that the children made to share about the impact he had on his family, leaving out the accomplishments of the world.  As I watched this unfold, my mind went to these verses in Proverbs:  “With the fruit of a man's mouth his stomach will be satisfied; He will be satisfied with the product of his lips.  Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” Proverbs 18:20-21
What a powerful reminder that our words have the ability to build up or to tear down.  As a believer in Jesus Christ, we are transformed by God’s power that raised Jesus from the dead.  God spoke, and Jesus was raised.  God’s spoke, and we were made.  God spoke, and we are saved!  Our words now have the ability to speak encouragement, wholeness, and peace into others.  We learn how to speak these encouraging words from God by the power of the Holy Spirit.  We then pass it onto our spouse, then our children, and then to others.  Notice that our stomach (conscience) is satisfied first.  We can be at peace with who God has created us to be, and that peace can now be passed out to others.  

This scripture also talks about being satisfied with the product of our lips, meaning that we should be at peace with the product of what we say.  It’s often called the fruit of our lips, which means that we see the results of what we say.  The interesting part or, might I say, the Christ-like principle from the Bible is something that I learned early in my life as a farmer.  The corn seed goes into the ground and must die to germinate and produce around 800 kernels per ear of corn.  One seed produces three or four ears of corn, so you can do the math.  The principle is clear.  For us to produce encouragement and build others up, we must die first.  No, not a physical death.  We must die to our selfish wants and desires and allow our lives to be an example for others.  For me personally, it means my decisions in life should take into consideration what is best for my wife when it comes to our marriage, my children when it comes to our family, and my Church when it comes to our message and purpose through Jesus Christ.  

May the legacy of my life not be in any accomplishments but noted in the building of life in others who will, in turn, do the same for generations to come.  Will you join me?

Pastor Dan