Words Become Powerful When You Begin to Set Your Broken Bones

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Penny Maxwell

A lot of stuff came to the surface when I allowed God to start resetting my broken bones. Some of it I knew was there—and some of it I didn’t.

In the dirt right beneath my beautiful flowers was a fear of abandonment. In fact fear of abandonment was the dirt in some ways. Every person who was supposed to look out for me when I was young—my mom, dad, stepdad, grandparents, and others—either couldn’t or wouldn’t, so my experience told me, “You will always be abandoned by people who are supposed to love and care for you.” That was my paradigm.

Breaking Evil Foreboding

These were manifestations of a terrible mindset the Scripture calls “an evil foreboding.” (See Proverbs 15:15.) In this frame of mind, you wake up every single day anticipating that something bad will happen. For me, in my life up to that point, evil foreboding had often proved true. I had no problem believing for physical healing, which I witnessed in our family, or for financial provision, which happened for us all the time. But we didn’t have a loving, caring environment where I felt fully safe to trust others. My experiences had conditioned me to believe that something bad was always around the corner and that it was unavoidable. Some people call it waiting for the other shoe to drop. I had heard many other shoes drop by the time I married Troy.

As I opened up to His touch, the Lord highlighted places in my life where this evil foreboding was shaping my approach toward people and situations. I never would have verbalized it, but it was true. My actions were saying, “God, I really don’t believe You are good. I’m not really trusting You.” Even after ten years of marriage, I would suddenly have the thought, “Everybody’s going to leave me. Troy’s going to leave me. Everything’s going to be taken from me.” I knew this was probably rooted in my childhood experience of having good things given to me and then taken away to control my behavior. This interrupted my trust, kept my roots shallow, and made me wary of good people and good situations. It was an unhealthy expectation that evil would eventually control the situation—so I withheld my love.

At first I asked God to solve the evil foreboding by giving me more information. “Let me see the end of my story,” I said in effect. “Then I’ll come back to the chapter we’re in and trust You.” I wanted evidence of safety before giving my trust. But God does not work that way. The Bible says God’s Word is a lamp to your feet (Ps. 119:105). If you have a lamp in your hand, you can only see a few steps ahead. Then you step into that and see the next steps. He doesn’t give us headlights for our feet—He gives us a lamp that illuminates only the immediate area. That requires us to step where we know to step and trust Him for everything beyond that.

Changing My Internal Dialogue

Getting in tune with my internal dialogue was key. I trained myself to listen to the thoughts running through my head—and then I wrote down all toxic thoughts to expose them to the light. This became a very specific exercise for me, like hand-to-hand combat with evil foreboding. I literally started taking a toxic thought I had captured running through my mind and counteracting it by speaking or writing a specific truth from the Word of God. If the toxic thought “My future is uncertain, and I can’t trust what God will do” came, I counteracted it by saying and writing down something like Jeremiah 29:11, which reads, “I know the plans I have for you.” If I was wrestling with a lack of peace, then I found every Scripture on peace that I could. Maybe I had lost my joy. Joy is our strength, so I found Scriptures on joy. I did that with everything.

I had loved the Bible before this, but now I discovered new levels of power in speaking the Word of God. I had newfound faith in its ability to change my life. I thought I was doing well before, but close combat built skills and faith I’d not had before. It was amazing.

I saw how true it is that words are never neutral. When you say, “I’m so sick. I’m so broke. My marriage is a mess. I’m so depressed. I am so upset. I can’t get out of this cycle. I never get a break,” you are opening the door wide to those realities. Your mouth has creative power. It is the same kind of power God used to speak all creation into existence with the words “Let there be…” (e.g., Gen. 1:3). Proverbs 18:21 says death and life are in the power of our tongues. That is not just poetry; it’s literal reality.

We have been given the power to speak life into our marriages, into bad relationships, and into negative health diagnoses. We don’t ignore the existence of tough stuff. Before God spoke light into existence, the Bible plainly says the earth was dark and unformed (Gen. 1:2). Before Jesus raised His friend Lazarus from the grave, He plainly told His disciples, “Lazarus has fallen asleep; but I am going there to wake him up” (John 11:11). Don’t pretend your broken bones aren’t there.

Call them out and speak to them! This is why God gave you a tongue. Acknowledge the hurtful, difficult things, and then overcome them by speaking to them in agreement with the Holy Spirit. That’s power. {eoa}

Broken Bones
The preceding is an excerpt from chapter 5 of Penny Maxwell’s Setting Broken Bones (Charisma House, 2021). You can order the book at mycharismashop.com.

Penny Maxwell is a dynamic, bold, forward-thinking leader who uses her voice for good. She brings clarity and unflinching truth at a time when many find it easier to stay silent. She has expanded her influence and raised her platform because she tells it like it is. After surviving a very broken childhood filled with trauma and abuse, she has learned to thrive no matter what the circumstances. Her engaging communication gift draws people to her and they find an authentic connection with a woman who loves God and people. She has given her life to help others find the healing she has.

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