Friends! With the exception of last Saturday’s cool temps and low humidity, we’ve been HOT and HUMID here in the Bluegrass State since before the first day of summer. I don’t know about you, but heat is not my friend. I get tired, and cranky, and my tongue gets me into trouble.
Notice I’m blaming my tongue, not my heart—where the words bubble up out of in the first place. Anyone else?
I discovered a super helpful book around Christmas season of 2016, called Keep it Shut: What to Say, How to Say It, and When to Say Nothing at All by Karen Ehman. I dubbed it the “Perfect Handbook for the Christmas Season.” Click here to read more.
Sadly, like most things, I loved it, but promptly forgot about it until….my friend, Sue, in South Carolina told me about a devotional she was reading, Zip It: The Keep it Shut 40-Day Challenge, yes, by Karen Ehman! I ordered it immediately.
This little book packs a powerful punch. It’s just what the doctor ordered for a quick, fast, booster shot to TRAP YOUR TONGUE. It piggybacks off of Karen’s Keep it Shut book. She tell us that on our 40-day journey together,
Each of the forty devotionals are divided into four parts:
1 – The devotional itself, always introduced by a pertinent Scripture,
2 – “Today’s Takeaways” – great ideas to apply to our lives,
3 – “Lesson for the Lips” – thought-provoking questions to get you moving in the direction of the takeaways, and
4 – A closing prayer.
One of my favorites is from entry 7, “Your Heart Thoughts are Louder than you Realize.” From several points in Scripture, Karen shows us Jesus knows our thoughts before they’re ever spoken. She says,
“Jesus hears the words of your heart.
Jesus hears the words you speak to others.
Jesus hears the words you say to yourself.”
Here’s where things get interesting. In “Today’s Takeaways,” Karen says, Keep a clean “word-robe.” Likening our heart and mind to a closet, Karen asks, “What kind of “word-robe” do you have hanging in there?
Think on that question a minute.
She suggests, “Keep it clean, fresh, and full of His promises!”
How’s that for a wonderful word picture? That’s stuck with me throughout the entire reading of this book. It smacks me daily, too, as John and I’ve just had our closets re-done. Neat and orderly is now their potential, however, should the closet police visit unexpectedly, dirty laundry, spare hangers, and stray tennis shoes could possibly be discovered…
Let’s close with Karen’s beautiful prayer:
Friends, these highlights are just from one of the forty devotionals Karen blesses us with. Run, don’t walk to your nearest bookstore and grab this book! It would make a great gift for your friends too!
Huge thanks to Karen Ehman for being bold and honest enough to share her experiences with us. These are ones we can all relate to, laugh about, and learn from.
Once you read this book, let me know which ones are your favorites. Two others that made me howl while simultaneously stepping on my toes (but in a good way) are: “That time I spied ugly in the mirror,” and “But you don’t know my family.” I’m telling you, they’re for all of us!
‘Til next time!