A few weeks ago, we were talking with our friends Kristi & Nathan, and for some reason Eric started talking about swallowing pills. Kristi is a speech pathologist and taught us something I’ve never heard before! She said that you are NOT supposed to throw your head back to swallow a pill. This action actually closes up your throat!
Wow! I never knew that! I always throw my head back thinking it will help. But when I started thinking about it, I never can get it to go down that way. Learning to swallow a pill was a very difficult task for me as a child & I don’t think I really learned until I was a young teenager. It was HARD and SCARY to me!
So, Kristi said that you are actually supposed to tilt your head forward & your throat will open up more & it will go down easily. This seems very counter-intuitive but it actually works. I’ve now been trying to quit my 30-year habit & trying to change as I swallow my vitamins every morning now.
It was funny that we had this long conversation about swallowing a pill, but then I started thinking about how God’s word is also a hard pill to swallow at times. It’s easy for me to read the stories of old like Noah & Joseph & David. I love reading about the life of Jesus and how He loves me so much. It’s also easy to read about some of the wicked people in the Bible like Jezebel & start thinking how proud I am that I am NOT like that!
But then there are some of those commands that are just plain “hard to swallow.”
Here are just a few:
Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation in which you shine like stars in the universe.
OK, sometimes I just want to complain about everything that is going on in my life, but God is telling me that is not good! Hard pill to swallow.
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
So I shouldn’t yell at my boys to hurry up & get in the car when we’re running late for church? Another hard pill to swallow.
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.
For by the grace given me I say to everyone of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.
Sometimes I’d like things to go MY way instead of what everyone else wants. Sometimes I wish my family would take care of the cooking and laundry, but that’s putting my interests ahead of them. Yet another hard pill to swallow.
Set a guard over my mouth, O Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips. Let not my heart be drawn to what is evil, to take part in wicked deeds by men who are evildoers; let me not eat of their delicacies.
When I read this verse, I visualize a big lock on my mouth…I wish I actually had one sometimes! A hard pill to swallow.
Let your conversation always be full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may not how to answer everyone.
Again, my conversation is not so “full of grace” when I’m yelling at my dog because he’s jumping up to the table to eat Ethan’s leftover food when I’m trying to clean the kitchen! A hard pill to swallow.
Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
Sometimes it’s easier to hold a grudge than to actually forgive someone one. Another hard pill to swallow.
I bet you get the picture. As I am trying to mature in my faith, I need to learn to swallow these “horse” pills as well as the “gel” pills. It just takes a double-portion of the “fruit of the Spirit.” (Galatians 5:22)