Over the years, people have said some pretty hurtful things to me like "He's marrying you???" That came from an older lady at my church when she heard that my husband, Jeff, Mr. My-Favorite-Pastime-Is-Balancing-The-Budget, Mr. Farmed-in-Lincoln-County-All-His-Life-Except-For-4-Years-Of-College-And-Two-Years-Of-City-Work was marrying me, Ms. Occasionally-Had-To-Sell-Clothes-To-Pay-Back-Gambling-Debt, Ms. Lived-At-30-Different-Addresses-Before-Moving-To-The-Farm. Yep, he was marrying me. And we're still married, 15 years later.
And this. "I don't like you because you always want to be up front to get attention." Yeah. Uh-huh. Right. I guess she didn't talk to the guy in the front row at church who could see me shaking head to toe every time I played piano. I guess she didn't see the Scriptures written all over my music, every page, because it was the only way I could survive being up front. I guess she didn't know that I only directed the VBS children's program at the end of the week - up front - because I was too lazy to bake cookies or play games with the kids.
And I could go on (and how I'd like to go on), but the point is not to tell sob stories about myself. All of us have had hurtful things said to us and, if we're honest, we know we've hurt others with our careless words too.
The point is to say that we must - we MUST - receive words of truth, positive words, affirming words, fresh words - from the Word Himself, Jesus. He tells us that, in Him, we are good enough. He tells us that, in Him, we were created to do good works, given gifts, personalities, and experiences to share with others. But how will we hear His words to us unless we take time to read them? Unless we shut out all the other competing voices?
Today in my walk through the Gospels, in Matthew 5, I stopped on the word "blessed." The Greek word for blessed is Makarios. It means that we, as children of God, have serene, untouchable, godlike joy that's independent of all the chances and changes of life.
And so today, if someone just happens to say something hurtful to me (I'm not anticipating it :) or you, we are still blessed. Jesus tells us that. In His Word.