Out Loud

There is something that happens when we speak.  When the words pass over our tongue and we actually say something out loud.   When we speak trust, proclaim it with our voice, something changes in the landscape of our faith.

For us writers, it’s easy to get immersed in the weight of the pen or the tapping of keys as our hearts bleed blue and black in journals and pours out in words that flash across screens.  And I forget sometimes that there are some words that need to be spoken.  Out loud.

This tendency to hide behind the written word has found its way into my prayer life.  And while I don’t think that there is anything wrong with journaling prayers I do think that, in between the lines, there is an intimacy that is being sacrificed, moments for holiness that I am exchanging for a blinking cursor or words for my blog.

 

Sometimes the words bubble up and threaten to spill out and over and yet time and again I find that my go to, my safe place, is to silence them with my pen.  Sometimes the pain of the day, the life that presses close, the hectic, the hurried and the crisis seem less daunting, less intimidating when we can face it with paper and ink instead of a cry out to God.  That somehow burying the worry of the day between the pages of a journal will be the same as having a conversation with Him, my Rescuer.

Paul seemed to get this notion, the power of the spoken word, when it would have been easier for him to never open his mouth.  This is a guy who has had a few bad days.

 

“We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed…”  2 Corinthians 4:8-9

Pressed.  Perplexed. Hunted. Knocked down.

And then this…

“But we continue to preach because we have the same kind of faith the psalmist had when he said, ‘I believed in God, so I spoke.’” 2 Corinthians 4:13

 
I believed in God, so I spoke.

 

Paul is taking a page out of David’s story (Psalm 116). Now there’s another who has known life’s knocks

 
“Death wrapped its ropes around me;
the terrors of the grave overtook me.
I saw only trouble and sorrow.” Psalm 116:3

David the author of most of the Psalms, the ultimate Prayer Journaler still found value in the spoken word.  In the first verse of this Psalm he describes God bending low to hear us – God, the Creator of the Universe pressing His ear to our lips so that He can hear our words.

 “I love the Lord because he hears my voice
and my prayer for mercy.
Because he bends down to listen…” (v.1 & 2a)

And in his words David describes how his faith flourished when he used his voice to cry out to God – either in praise or despair:

 

“I will pray as long as I have breath!” (v. 2b)

“Then I called on the name of the Lord:
‘Please, Lord, save me!’” (v. 4)

“I believed in you, so I said,
‘I am deeply troubled, Lord.’” (v. 10)

 

“I will offer you a sacrifice of thanksgiving
and call on the name of the Lord.” (v. 17)

 And it’s awkward at first, speaking out loud, having a seemingly one sided conversation with God.  I know this for a fact because I tried it in my car last week.  With two hands on the wheel, there’s no way to grab a pen and hide in my journal.  So in halting, stilted words I began and I prayed… 

 
Out. Loud.


8 Comments

  1. Oh my, friend. Last Wednesday evening, I prayed aloud in my car for the first time that I can recall. It felt awkward and foreign, but I felt the need to just do it. And it was good.

    Thanks for these words. 🙂

  2. Yes, there are those words that we need to speak out loud to ourselves, to others and to our Lord. At heart I am a speaker but even with that love I have to remind myself that I need to share from my heart not just speak from my head. Thanks for the words you share.

    • Amy… It’s a challenge for me sometimes to say those words that need to be said outloud… glad that these written ones spoke to you today.

  3. Oh sweet friend! Yes to this! There is POWER in what we say – and when we say it with purpose – on purpose, in prayer – the atmosphere shifts and …just wow! I love this! I believe with all my heart in the power of our words being spoken out loud – in some serious Decreeing and Declaring… put Breath to Word and Speak Out Loud… giving Voice to Thought and setting into motion action to release the answer… of course- this journalers’ heart writes out truth and pain and hope… and He is near… but OH when I just speak it out loud – whispered, trembling, uttered under breath – right out in the open air… Holy charges the room and His Presence swoops right on in to my heart! LOVE love love this!

    • Girl… I love you to pieces… both are so imporant writing and speaking… I just know I’ve been challenged to speak more – not write less but speak more… Love you!

  4. Anonymous

    Out loud or in our hearts….God hears everything and I don’t think he judges us either way…..For some folks who have been emoting aloud all their lives they need to have the courage to whisper the words in their heart where only they can hear….for others speaking their hearts longings aloud might be a new path to take. But our God is not is the business of levels…..one is not better than the other; it however we are being moved to be in touch with holiness. Just had to say that because I was getting the feeling that one was a step higher than the other.
    still an anonymous mom. xx

    • He absolutely does hear everything… and I certainly didn’t meant to elevate one over the other… I am a writer at heart… I think I have been challenged to speak more, not write less, but defintely use my outside voice a little more. Love that you stop by here to comment Mom – and hate it that you’re still anonymous – so not sure how to fix that. xx

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