“Oh, my goodness! Did I really just say that out loud!?” Surely you’ve had that thought before. Or what about this one? “I can’t believe he (or she) just said that! Don’t he (or she) know better than to talk like that!?”
Amazingly, we’ve all been there and done that. I’m among those who have transgressed with their tongue. It appears to be too easy to sin with words. And what about those things that get said that aren’t necessarily sin, but they should have been said more tactfully?
James 3:2 from the J.B. Phillips New Testament reads like this: “We all make mistakes in all kinds of ways, but the man who can claim that he never says the wrong thing can consider himself perfect, for if he can control his tongue he can control every other part of his personality!” That last part is profoundly true.
Memes and GIFs abound on social media to explain the sometimes malicious behavior of the tongue. I know, sometimes it’s all just fun and games. Except when it’s not so fun and it doesn’t feel like a game. Really, it’s a lot easier to smile or jeer at someone’s snarkiness – as long as it was not directed at me.
There are those times when the spoken words are right on the mark. But they were said with such an ugly tone of voice. And if looks could kill… Well, you get the point. Body language also matters a whole lot in verbal communication.
Christian, God can’t bless ugliness. Mean or ill-motived behavior does not bring the blessings of God into the situation regardless of how much supposed truth you speak.
STOP attempting to justify rude behavior with reasons like these. That’s just the way I am. I say whatever comes into my mind. I don’t have any filter, I just tell it like it is. I just can’t help myself.
Christian, you’ve been born again into a new family with a new nature. It’s time for you to yield into the grace of sanctification.
You have many valid opinions on many things. However, your thoughts and suggestions are less likely to offend or come across as self-righteousness if you wait until they are requested.
On this subject, I can identify with what the State Farm insurance company advertisement says, “We know a thing or two because we’ve seen a thing or two.” I know a thing or two about this tongue trouble because I’ve been around the local church block a time or two and I’ve heard way too much.
The meanest member in your local church most likely has a problem with one of the smallest members of their body. Perhaps that little member is set on fire by hell. These things ought not to be so. Make sure you are not that church member.
Words are humankind’s most powerful tool. Use them wisely and change your world. And if you don’t have anything nice or edifying to say, it’s probably best to say nothing at all. Believe it or not, sometimes silence is the best option.
Take these tips on tongue control and apply them liberally as needed. Literally, the human tongue only weighs a few ounces, yet there seem to be relatively few who can hold it. Don’t let that stop you from attempting this heavy lifting.
The tongue is a powerful instrument used to wield the power of life and death. It can only be disciplined by the heart of its owner. You must yield ownership to the One who created them both.
No man or woman can tame the tongue! BUT GOD CAN!
As well, don’t forget to apply these thoughts to your social media usage. Everything you think does not need to be typed into your favorite social media platform for your world to read, (nor does every picture you take need to be uploaded to the internet).
Christian, is your tongue the meanest member of your body? “Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth!” Don’t get burnt. Read and take these Scriptures to heart. Your Lord and your friends will be glad you did. Proverbs 18:21, Psalm 19:14, Matthew 12:35, and last but not least is James 3:1-12.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, be Lord of my life in new ways today. Help me to filter every decision through your grace-filled throne room. Melt my heart and tame my tongue until I am wholly sanctified for Your glory. In Your strong name, I pray, Amen.