Mark and I woke up again last night around 2:30 in the morning to the voice of our daughter jabbering away. While hanging out in her little crib next to us, she’s formed this new routine of chatting in the darkness of the night. We often grunt out of exhaustion and the fact that she hasn’t received the memo that it is time to sleep. But there’s also a part of us that smirks with amusement because she is so. dang. cute.
What I love most about it is that our three month old has found her voice. And she’s using it.
It’s amazing to watch her learn to talk in a new way. Those first two months her voice was used for one thing and one thing only – to make sure no one was left unaware that she was in immediate need of milk or a diaper change.
But something changed these last few weeks and she’s found that her voice can also be used to converse. No need for permission from others (or daytime hours) to commence.
As I’ve watched her find her voice and use it for something new, I’ve felt the whisper of God reminding me to find my own voice again. In seasons past I was one to stand on furniture and declare with volume and certainty the great promises of God. I was also one to look often at myself eye-to-eye in the mirror and speak words of identity and life.
But in the last season I allowed my voice to trail away, not purposefully but subtly. As the days drifted by my voice went quiet to those prophetic areas of speaking life.
Maybe yours did too?
When our voices go dormant, it’s easy to spin and swirl by the words of the world around us. We can feel so stuck, exhausted, or plain lost. When we find ourselves there, the best thing we can do is use our voice again to whisper to ourselves who we are, what we are promised, and who we are resting under. Especially when we don’t feel any of it.
Our voice anchors us. When we speak words filled with hope and life, we’re reminding ourselves of what is promised and weighing ourselves down by his truth. Those words ground us.
The opportunity today is that you and I can actually speak words that stir fresh hope and focus into our lives. We can remind ourselves of our confidence, purpose, and passion. That God is not done, he is still working, and we have not missed it. And then we can trust those words, rest into them, and go about our days secure that we are exactly who God says we are.
Fear often keeps us so tense that we hold in the only breath we have, resulting in no life in and no life out. But speaking forces us to exhale. When we release what’s inside, especially over ourselves, we breathe. And by doing so, we remember again that each day we live by inhaling his presence and exhaling his truth.
So it’s Friday. If you find yourself swirling with confusion and doubt, breathe. Begin speaking over yourself what you know to be true, any and all promises you can pull from Scripture. Or if you need help, below are some words to start off today different from others, filled with anticipation for what could be and settled that you are secure as you are. Take a deep breath, forget the swirling lies, and use your voice to speak what is true.
I promise, today will be different because of it.
He delights over me and loves me.
I have resurrection power living in my bones. There are opportunities today to bring life to myself and others.
He trusts me. And I know him.
God hears my prayers and will answer them. He will not forget.
I am bold, strong, and fully equipped to do what he is asking me to do today.
God knows what he’s promised and he will fulfill. I can rest and journey on the pilgrimage.
Today has purpose and it matters to my story.
His plans are active in my life.
I will taste and see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.
photo credit: Donnie Ray Jones