– Inyang Okutinyang
Regardless of what stage of life we find ourselves we are always looking for things to be better. That seems to for the same for people everywhere. We all want a better tomorrow than today. That seems to be a universal heart yearning of man. God Himself wants better things for us.
19 I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live.
God is letting us know that there are only two headings where things fall into in this life: Life and Death. Under those two we have two sets. The blessings then go under the heading of Life and the curses go under the heading of Death. So we are not in any doubt He tells us to choose Life, so we will have the blessings and our children will also learn from that and do the same. He does not want the curse in any part of our lives of family.
21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue, And those who love it will eat its fruit.
We have further insight from God, that death (the curse) and life (blessing), is in our mouths. So we can speak either one on ourselves and over our lives and future. The choice lies with us. God is telling us we sit in the driver seat of our lives. One may ask, isn’t God the One who blesses us? Yes He does, however if He speaks a blessing over us, we can counter His blessing by our own speaking. We’ve got to watch our mouth!! This is borne out all through scripture. The story of the nation of Israel confirms this “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, but you were not willing!” (Luke 13:34). This is Jesus’ testimony about Israel.
Whether we live a life of blessing or not is not dependent on God solely. As a matter of God it depends on us more than it depends on God for we has already given us His word, that He wants to bless us and He has asked us to choose life. So if we do not end up with the blessing, the problem is on our end.
12 Who is the man who desires life, And loves many days, that he may see good?
13 Keep your tongue from evil, And your lips from speaking deceit.
Here in the psalms, God asks: who is that person who wants to experience the blessings and live a long and fulfilling life? Here is His prescription… keep your tongue from evil. In others words rein your mouth, your words in. Do not just speak without due thought and restraint. It is interesting that tongue-control is His first instruction. Do not speak based on your feelings or offer your opinion at random.
From my experience it does not matter where my countrymen get to meet. Whether it be in Europe, North America, or in the country itself. One regular topic of discussion is the state of things in our country. We go, on and on about how bad things her and how they are; getting worse by the day; and what corrupt and self-serving leadership we have in our country. We pray in our churches and homes about the country for things to turn around, and in many cases we even had prophecies from Lord telling His people He desires to effect changes, and at the next gathering in whatever place we are back at criticizing and running down the country and the leadership.
If life and death are in the power of the tongue, then our continual speaking of the problems of our country is effectively undoing or prayers. Besides in all these years of speaking negatively about the country’s state of affairs has it resulted in the kind results we are looking for? Absolutely not! I then it is time for us to consider our ways. (Haggai 1:5)
If death and life are in the tongue’s power, then many of us the over the years have been pronouncing curse on our country without realizing it. Let’s now make an about face. Let us bless our country. Let us speak blessings over our leaders so God will intervene on our behalf and change things He alone can. Let us bless our leaders so we will have good and God fearing leadership who are considerate of the people and the scourge of corruption will be dealt a mortal blow. Let us not undo are prayers but let’s keep this positive change sustained for years to come and let’s see what kind of results we have.
If we as the church have the government on our shoulders as we are commanded to pray in 1 Timothy 2: 1- 2, God must mean business in effecting changes when we pray. Elijah was just one man who pray and influenced things in Israel in His time with a limited righteousness, how much more the body of Christ in this country who have the righteousness of Christ Himself do much more if we pray, blessing our land. Let us take our place and enable our God to carry out His plan and purpose for today.