“Use Your Words!”

If I had a $1 for every time I have used these 3 words over the last 5 weeks, I would be on a cruise right about now!

You see, we have a little visitor for the summer–my great niece. She’s a fireball of words, thoughts, and actions. I was worried that we wouldn’t be able to keep up with her physically but, as it turns out, we can’t keep up with the “training in righteousness.”

It is a daily stream of words such as, “walk please,” “don’t play on the stairs” “use your words” “what’s the magic word?” You know, all the stuff that you need to get along in this world. Then the tears soon follow when we have to take away a privilege, quickly followed by stomping and whining.

And then I find myself growing weary in the mundane habits that I have casually taken for granted. You see, our baby is 23; yep she’s 23 years old. So, it’s been a few years since we had a 7-year-old in our home full-time. But, I’m learning and the learning curve is steep!

galatians 6:9

And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.” Galatians 6:9 (ESV)

This summer I am finding new meaning in this verse. I now understand the training in righteousness is working both ways. As I am diligent in training this sweet young woman, the Lord is training me as well.

When I struggle with holding my temper I’m reminded that God is very patient with me. He allows me to make my own foolish choices and suffer the consequences, and yet He still reaches out to me with loving arms. I am never beyond His reach or out of His realm of love.

I see my niece grapple from within; I can see the struggle of choosing righteousness over what is familiar and easier. Honestly, I see myself in her and in the conflict of her inner struggle.

Choosing righteousness is hard work and at times it wears me out.

This verse is a double-edged sword. We are promised to win and all we have to do is hang on! We don’t even need to get there first; we just need to get there! God has promised us glory in exchange for perseverance.

At this point in our summer, we’re just limping towards the finish line.

Maybe you find yourself growing weary in the middle of your summer as well.

Whatever is wearing you out this summer, remember this: Jesus! We get Jesus! Go ahead, limp, crawl, or be carried–just make it to the finish line! I’m looking forward to seeing the redemption of time spent on our knees in prayer and time spent in the Word.

Trust me, it will be glorious!

So, as I work my way diligently to the finish line, I am reminded of the Planting Roots theme this year: “All In!” There is no room for less of anything. When you use the word “all,” it’s everything.

I encourage you to start journaling in big or small ways, whichever is your jam. Read the Word and/or pray, then write something down. It’s that easy.

Why? Because at the beginning of fall, when you look back on the summer and wonder where all the time went, you can read how the Lord helped you make it to the end and how the Holy Spirit wouldn’t let you faint or grow weary.

You can see the tangible evidence in your very own handwriting how the Holy Spirit empowered you to make it to the end.

I know at the end of this summer I’ll be forever changed and so will this sweet girl. And if I write it down, then I won’t forget how big our God is!


Lord, I want to be Jesus to my sweet niece. Show me how to love her well and lead her to You. Lord, remind me through the working of the Holy Spirit to “use Your words” when I speak to her and to remain faithful to “walk” with her on this journey. Thank you, Jesus, for the opportunity to grow, not in weariness, but rather in righteousness. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

<>< Claudia


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