What Might Soothe Their Wounds

January 28, 2020 by  
Filed under Faith, Faith Articles

By Janet Perez Eckles –

Some months ago after a visit to my doctor, I stopped by the receptionist counter. “Is this all I need?” She placed papers in my hand, “Sure is, have a great day.” Her tone rang with tenderness.

“Thank you,” I said, leaning toward the desk. “Stay as sweet as you are.”

After a few moments, she said, “That is the nicest thing I heard in a long time.” Her voice choked.

I’d not said anything profound or particularly complimentary. But I was touched, really touched but also intensely enlightened.

How could a few words evoke such reactions in others? How can our tone accompanying our words stir a response of gratitude, or even a reaction of admiration and gladness?

Words hold power, often greater than swords in our hands. Those words that slip from our tongue, those letters that we string together in emails, those responses to telemarketers or drivers on the road, even to those we love  either plant a sweet scent of encouragement or drip dark gloom into someone’s day.

A friend of mine begins her emails with: Hello dear sweet Janet.” A warm wave of delight caresses my heart when reading her greeting. And in turn, prompts me to ripple that same feeling to someone else.

Conversely, confessing my faults, I’ve had moments when the words I poured out spurred ugly regret. Words to friends, hubby and even my children. And while turning the pages of the album of my heart, I wonder what words ring in my sons’ ears, or echo still?

Not long ago, I asked them. “Hey guys, do you remember the notes I used to Scotch tape to your pillows?”

“Got every one of them. I saved them mom,” my oldest son said.

“I remember the notes that you’d put in our lunch boxes,” chimed my twenty-five year old.”

They remember, I thought with delight. Like a soft Fall breeze, gladness swept over me. They may have forgotten moments when I blurted instructions, quick demands, and harsh scoldings. But something prompted me to spend those few seconds jotting simple words on a piece of paper and stuff them in their lunch boxes. Perhaps it was an attempt to fill the role of a good mom, or to make-up for my feelings of inadequacies, insecurities.

Or just a tug at my heart, wanting them to know they were loved, really loved.

As they got older, longer notes that expanded on life’s insights, admonishments and praises for their achievements waited for them on their pillows.

Words whether written or said, can transform and turn wounds to healing, dark moments into hope, defeat into victory and even despair into joy. Struggles and fears abound, they did for my sons. And also swirl in the lives of those we touch. The words we sprinkle might just be the balm that soothes their broken world.

“A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver” (Proverbs 25:1).

Five Ways to Find Security

June 4, 2019 by  
Filed under Faith, Faith Articles

By Janet Perez Eckles –

I frowned. “SCUBA diving?”

“C’mon, it’ll be lots of fun,” our friend said.

“Crazy idea,” I said, “especially for a blind person.”

But our friend, a certified diver, gave details of the depth of the ocean. The gear used, training involved and the levels of oxygen needed.

“Too much stuff!” I said. “I’d rather relax in the sun, listening to a book on CD.”

Later, I reflected on the incredible depth of the ocean. But even its deep waters have their limit.

What a contrast to the depth of God’s love that has no limit. And with no end, we can navigate with only the desire of our hearts.

But the problem is that as we swim in the hectic and hurried style of life, we forget. Dealing with my blindness, I myself sometimes forget the dimension of His love. The profound compassion and His unending faithfulness toward those of us who splash in the waters of adversity.

And while on that journey, here are some questions to check our level of security:

  • If we truly understood how deep His love is for us, would we fear anything?
  • If we knew the profound level of His faithfulness, would we fret over details?
  • If we had a true understanding of His mercy, would we still feel condemned when we’ve sinned?
  • If our minds could comprehend His power to sustain us, would we tremble at the unknown?
  • And if we understood who we are In Christ, would we succumb to self-pity?

When we’re in the sea that roars with heartache, or face the waves of burdens that keep coming, let’s plunge into His Word and ponder on the beauty of the journey, breathing in the freshness of His grace.

“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging” (Psalm 46:1-3).

Father, thank you for allowing me to navigate not in the darkness of pain, but in the light and freshness of your promises. Help me to remember to wear the equipment of trust for my soul, and the tank of faith for my heart as I set off in the journey. In Jesus name.