The Bible reminds us that the tongue, albeit small, is one of the most troublesome parts of our bodies. In an instant it can cause mayhem.
I have grown up as one of those swift to speak and have offended others as a result, as well as shaming myself. Somehow, when I feel something intensely I cannot help but speak; right or wrong, my mouth takes over and all too easily runs ahead of both wisdom and discretion. I have wounded far too many people in this way, and it’s something I regret.
We are invited by God to use our tongues to worship him, build up one another in faith, and make sense of the gospel in a disbelieving world. Road rage and other irritations show that everyone has a hard time controlling their mouth. However, am I, as a follower of Jesus, simply to ape the declining public standards all around me? Yet, recovering control is a difficult exercise and requires strict discipline. We adopted a Missions Box, which received cash donations every time any one of us in the household swore. This actually worked over a month to make us more aware of our slippage into bad language, language which greatly improved and has retained that improvement.
It’s so easy to speak out of an immediate defensive reaction, or sense of self-righteousness. You are not to justify yourself; pause to think before responding. Let the sense of accusation subside and reflect on what you are trying to achieve in any conversation. It is as you adopt a step-by-step approach that you will begin to tame the tongue and discover a richer everyday life as a consequence, one that reflects the grace and kindness of God.
(Dr Micha Jazz)
With many peaceful blessings