I write about what you---
women, wives and moms---
about your family, faith and future.
I write about what's hard, what helps and what heals.
I show you how it's done. And not done.
I hold your hand as you find what matters to the Savior.
And let go of those things that mattered to you, but not to Him.
I write about what Him.
               Sonya Contreras

Do You Have the Right Words?

Remember Peter? He was Jesus’s disciple, always talking, always doing something to draw the attention to himself.
Peter had a way with words. He told the Lord, “You are the Christ, the Son of God.”
Remember Andrew? He was just Peter’s brother.
All Andrew’s life, he had spent getting Peter out of trouble from his words.
When they fished, Andrew reminded Peter, “Let me talk to the merchants, last time you made them angry and they almost wouldn’t buy our fish. We need a good sale, today.” Andrew didn’t say much, but when he did, it was significant.

Andrew heard John the Baptist tell about Jesus. He brought Peter to Christ. “We have found the Messiah!” (John 1:40-42)
When they came to Jesus for the first time, Jesus notices Peter, “You are Simon the son of John; you shall be called Cephas (Peter).” Jesus said nothing to Andrew.

Peter was always hopping out of the boat—even to the point of walking on the water. How would it feel to do that? Like you were floating on air? Or did you roll like thunder across the sky in the waves of the sea? When Andrew asked Peter, Peter couldn’t even remember, he was so busy talking!

When Jesus and his disciples are leaving the temple, Andrew notices the architecture. “What wonderful stones and buildings!”
Jesus looks beyond the temple and said, “Not one stone will be left upon another. All will be torn down.”
Fear stirs Andrew’s heart. What more could the Romans do to them? What should they do to be ready? Andrew stayed close to Jesus. Will he say anything more?
He doesn’t.

While sitting at the Mount of Olives with Peter, James and John, Andrew couldn’t wait. “What’s going to happen? When will we see this?”
Jesus said, “Many will spread rumors, cause wars, there’ll be earthquakes, famines.”
Andrew clenched his hands into fists. How could they fight all of that?
Jesus reassured Andrew, by touching his shoulder. “Be on guard. You will suffer.”
Andrew tried to look confident. “What should we do?”
Jesus nodded. “Do not fear what you will say. In that time, you will know.”

Andrew looked Jesus in the eyes.
Jesus told Andrew more in His eyes than in His words. “God will give you the words.”
Andrew lowered his eyes. He was not a speaker. (Mark 13:1-11)
“God will give me the words.”

Andrew pondered Jesus’s words. “God will give you the words.” They became a part of him.

The people gathered to listen to Jesus. This was the biggest crowd ever!
Andrew did not like crowds. He preferred the quiet time when Jesus answered his questions. But he understood the people’s thirst to drink from Christ’s words. He stood on tiptoe looking at all the people who would find the healing of His words.
A lad pushed his way closer to Jesus. No one would let him.
Andrew remembered Jesus’s rebuked them about letting the children come to him. Andrew left his place beside Jesus and moved through the crowd to reach the boy.
“What've you got?”
The lad held out his lunch. “My mom sent me to listen, so I could tell her the words of the Teacher. She couldn't come.”
Andrew smiled. “Come with me.” He led the boy to stand beside Jesus.
As they reached Jesus’s side, Andrew overheard Jesus asked Philip, “Where are we to buy bread, so that these may eat?”
Philip looked over the crowd. “Two hundred denarii worth of bread is not enough for them.”
Andrew nudged the lad ahead of him. “Here’s a lad who has brought five barley loaves and two fish, but what are these for so many people?”
Jesus nodded at Andrew and laid his hand on the lad’s shoulder. He turned to his disciples. “Tell the people to sit.” He showed him what he could do with so little. (John 6:5-14)

Nothing more is said of Andrew until we see the disciples huddled in the upper room after Jesus died.
Andrew did not get attention. He listened to Jesus. He brought others to Him.
Peter was a spokesman in Jerusalem. Andrew was just Peter’s brother.
The words of Jesus settled in Andrew’s heart. “God will give you the words.”
Andrew did not stay in Jerusalem with the other disciples. He went out into the world to bring them to Jesus.
Tradition says that Andrew was in Greece, debating with the Roman proconsul. He was given many chances to deny his faith, to forsake his God, to change his words. Instead he spoke about God Who became man to save him.
He would not change the words God gave him.

The Romans were known for their cruelty. They ruled the world.
If Andrew would not relent, then he would suffer.
He was crucified, not on a normal cross but on a cross in the shape of an “X,” so by tilting the body, breathing would be more difficult.
Instead of pounding nails in his hands, they tied them. Maybe he asked them, so he would not die like his Savior.
By tying his hands, he suffered longer.
He hung on the cross two days before he died.
Each breath was a struggle to lift his body up, grab a breath and fall down as gravity pulled him.

Tradition tells us during those final two days he hung on the cross, he preached to those who would hear.
Do you know what he preached?
God gave him the words.
Do you have the right words to say? Do your words point people to Jesus?
God will give you the words. Listen to Him.

Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE, Copyright 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.

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There are several times I can recall someone saying just the right words at the right time, and they have stayed with me for years. Words are around us all day long, but the "right words" may be remembered forever. Words heal or wound, I pray to be a healer.

Author of Biblical fiction, married to my best friend, and challenged by eight sons’ growing pains as I write about what matters.

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