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Posted by Selma
“But no man can tame the tongue, it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men…” - James 3:8-9 (NKJV)
While observing small children interacting with one another now and then I’d see an honoree child stick his tongue out at another child. Now honestly, how does that childe know to use his tongue as little weapon to hurt others? It is such a small fleshly culprit that one minute can be delightful and another minute destructive. We adult’s aren’t too different from the honoree kid. Aren’t we the same when we use our tongue for good or bad?
Children can say the funniest things or be blatantly honest. I’ll never forget this story a grandma shared with me. Her grandchild came to see her. Climbs onto her lap while they cuddled in her rocking chair when he abruptly turns and looks at her and say’s, “Grandma you got a mustache!” His grandma chuckled and thought that was so funny. It’s cute when kid’s do it but not so appropriate for an adult to say something like that (laugh out loud).
Once I was in a store and a woman in her late sixties was shopping with an eight year-old boy. The salesgirl told the boy to tell “his grandma’’ that certain items were on sale. The boy quickly replies loudly, “that’s my Mom!” The salesgirl remained speechless. The mom ignored the comment and continued shopping.
What about the time a guest at a party, a perfect stranger tries to make small talk with this woman as their waiting in line for a buffet? She then asks the woman “so how many months are you?” The woman graciously says, “I’m not pregnant!” Ouch!
There’s that darn little force at work again. Lesson one: Speaking without thinking! Be tactful and don’t assume and put your foot in your mouth
Let’s move onto another story. A friend told me she remembered going to her doctor’s office, when the secretary (a talebearer) decides to give her an ear-full about her doctor being gay - revealing his personal information outside of his professional life as a physician. My friend was disturbed by all she heard and it made her feel uncomfortable at her doctor’s visit. She never addressed the doctor concerning his secretary.
Here, this conniving little instrument is up to his tricks spreading rumors. Lesson two: Don’t be gossiping behind other people’s backs.
Words can be used to edify or to tear down.
On another occasion my Mom told me she drove to a gas station moving slowly until she was finishing pumping gas when an impatient teen honks and yells at my Mother, “get out of the way, you old B----.”My Mother said she calmly got back into her car turned to the girl and said, “God bless you have a nice day,” and drove away. Meanwhile, the angry girl continued shouting obscenities at her.
People nowadays lack self control and have no respect for one another anymore.
Beware of that ruthless little fire that doesn’t care who gets burnt. Lesson three: Refrain from using foul dirty language and hurting others.
We all have heard stories about cruel words and how it’s affected a person’s life. It’s painful when words are exchanged that can’t be taken back but even more hurtful when it’s coming from your own loved ones. They are horrible words that roll off our tongue and labels that wound deep and scar for life. For example: “you’re stupid,” “you’re lazy,” “I hate you,” “You’ll never amount to anything,” “I never loved you,” “you’re not welcome here,” and “you’re ugly,” are all words that wound.
The tongue is such a small deadly bite filled with venom. Lesson four: Know when to speak and when to hold your tongue (self control).
Finally, let’s talk about the words of Jesus. His tongue spoke with beautiful, uplifting, encouraging, gracious, truthful, and loving words. He is our ultimate example and role model.
Jesus said: “Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love,” (Jeremiah 31:3).
Jesus also spoke with words of authority and boldness: “And they were astonished at His teaching, for His word was with authority,” (Luke 4:32).
Jesus spoke with a tongue of tenderness and compassion: “Now Jesus called His disciples to Himself and said, “I have compassion on the multitude, because they have now continued with Me three days and have nothing to eat. And I do not want to send them away hungry, lest they faint on the way,’” (Matthew 15:32),
Jesus spoke with non-critical words: “…He said to her, ‘Woman, where are your accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?’ She said, ‘No one, Lord.’ And Jesus said to her, ‘Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more,’’’ (John 8: 10- 11).
After looking at Jesus words, we see how much we fall short but it’s not impossible to discipline ourselves.
In all honesty ladies, our tongues are wicked and we are selective as to how and to whom we choose to use it. I would go as far to say we know when and are aware how we choose to use it. You are lying to yourself if you say you aren’t aware. We just don’t want to take responsibility. Its easy to not have control anyone of us can do that. It’s much harder to have control and discernment. That’s why you have to desire to change and learn to have self control. I’m sure any one of you have experienced one of these situations before. I know I have, let’s take a look how we can work on how to tame our wild tongues for good:
1. Read your bible daily. This is your spiritual nourishment and communication with God. The results of reading your bible produces these qualities: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self control,” (Galatians 5:22).
2. Avoid being sucked into gossip. Simply don’t partake or respond. People who like to gossip usually want some kind of response and when they see you’re not biting, it’s no fun and they go to someone else. Also, we have to be careful to check everything with the facts. We do not want to be gullible to believe half truths and speak hastily about someone. Proverbs 4:24 says, “Put away from you a deceitful mouth, and put devious lips far from you.” Additionally, Proverbs 11:13 in the NIV states, “A gossip betrays a confidence, but a trustworthy man keeps a secret.”
3. Be aware of the choices of words you are using in conversation with others - are they edifying or deflating? Ephesians 4:29 states, “Let no corrupt word proceed out of our mouths except for necessary edification and grace to the hearer.” Colossians 3:8 in the NIV also says, “But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.”
4. Speak to others how you want to be spoken to. We need to stop using unwholesome speech. We need to speak according to Gods wisdom and love so that our words will be seasoned with grace. Colossians 4:4 says, “Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each other.” Proverbs 16:24 also states, “Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the bones.”
5. If we blow it (like I know we all will) Repent (i.e. admit you’re wrongs to Jesus) confess your sins. The Lord will forgive you and give you a new start. A sign of true repentance is change. Learn from your mistakes and don’t do it again. 1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Likewise, Proverbs 17:27 in the NIV states, “A man of knowledge uses words with restraint, and a man of understanding is even- tempered.”
In closing, we need to pray and ask the Lord to take control and lead us to walk in the spirit. When we walk in the spirit we behave like the Lord would have us be toward others - a simple lesson yet so difficult.
Isaiah 50:4: “The Lord God has given me, the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him who is weary.”