“Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips!” – Psalm 141:3
Have you ever had one of those moments where you really put your foot in it? Have you ever been caught saying something you shouldn’t or using inappropriate language? Have you ever complained? Ever found yourself “bonding” with someone while discussing someone else’s business – but only to pray for them, of course!
I am a talker. I have a lot to say and have a tendency to assume that everyone wants to hear it. J I struggle with what comes out of my mouth and I know that I am not alone in this. Does it really matter what we say? What if I’m just joking when I sarcastically respond to someone? I can’t help it; it’s my personality. Sorry but no. I have yet to meet a sarcastic toddler. Sarcasm is learned, just as gossip and cursing is learned. Even Sheldon from Big Bang was able to learn sarcasm (kind of). We learn how to communicate from the people around us, the shows on television, the music we listen to – we absorb it all.
I would say our words are a big concern to God and He speaks to us about them throughout scripture.
“The mouth of the righteous brings forth wisdom, but the perverse tongue will be cut off. The lips of the righteous know what is acceptable but the mouth of the wicked, what is perverse.” – Proverbs 10:31-32
“Whoever guards his mouth preserves his life; he who opens wide his lips comes to ruin.” – Proverbs 13:3
“The lips of the wise spread knowledge; not so the hearts of fools.” – Proverbs 15:7
These are just a few samples from one book in the Bible. We have a choice to speak like the wise or like the foolish. We can speak of this world and sounds like everyone around us with the gossip, the complaining, the comparisons and the divisiveness or we can speak truth and life. We can speak encouragement and positivity and unity. It’s not easy or at least it isn’t for me. It’s a constant battle; I’m inquisitive (sometimes confused with being nosey. LOL) but it’s a choice we all make.
“…but no human being can tame the tongue. It is restless evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless our Lord the Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God.” – James 3:8-9
We do this without thinking. We praise God and then complain about someone. I caught myself after church Sunday with the duel tongue. I had been praying and praising Jesus and then I got behind the wheel of my car. This is what I look like driving and with the attitude to match.
Now maybe those words unheard didn’t hurt the other driver but how simple it was for me to go from praise to criticism. We talk about how words “can’t hurt us” but they do. We might not show broken bones or bruises but the ache a careless word or intentionally malicious word can scar and wound us much worse than a physical touch.
So today, I ask you to choose to speak love and unity. Speak truth. Don’t talk about anyone else. Remember we’re called to be ambassadors, so if you want to speak share the Gospel. Give godly counsel. Be the light. Take it one conversation at a time. Tame the beast! Comment below with any tips you have for watching what you say. ❤