“Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or else make the tree bad and its fruit bad; for a tree is known by its fruit. Brood of vipers! How can you, being evil speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good things, and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things. But I say to you for every idle word men may speak, they will be give account of it on the day of judgement. For by our words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned” (Matthew 12:33-37).I want you to picture a full cup of water and then taking a handful of ice and placing it in that same cup making the cup overflow. The same thing happens with our hearts. The ice is like the input we get- the ways others treat us, the circumstances we face, and the opportunities that present themselves. The water overflowing is our mouth spilling out what is in our heart. If our words are often tinged with anger, self-pity, hostility, jealousy, and complaining, that is a reflection of our heart. God desires our heart to be filled with the Fruits of the Spirit, love joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23) so our words bear fruit.As young women pursuing Christ we need to be consistently in prayer for our heart and our mouth. The Holy Spirit living within us causes us to desire to live lives pleasing to God which means displaying all of the Fruits of the Spirit. The Holy Spirit also allows us to be mindful of the words we say, understanding how if we are not careful with our words that they can bring ruin. “There is one who speaks like a piercing sword, but the tongue of the wise promotes health” (Proverbs 12:18) and “He one who guards his mouth preserves his life; but he who opens wide his lips shall have destruction”(Proverbs 13:3). The enemy wants us to use our mouths to bring destruction to others as well as ourselves while on the other hand God wants us to use our words to bring life and bear witness.Taking an inventory of our heart is necessary. If our heart is lacking any of the Fruits of the Spirit are words will indeed reflect that. Going to God regularly in prayer for our heart and mouth is a must as we confess how we have fallen short and need His help to produce all the Fruits of the Spirit as well as maintain them.As we align our lives to the standard of God’s Word we know our hearts and mouths are a big part of that. They can hurt us or help us. Our desire should be that the words we use on a daily basis bring life, help, and hope instead of despair, hopelessness, and confusion to others and ourselves. Amen!

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