Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me.
We’ve heard the old saying our whole lives, but believe me, it’s not true. Most of us can testify to the negative effects someone’s words have had on our hearts. The truth is, we are all guilty. We’ve seen hurt in the eyes of others over damaging words that have left our mouths that we couldn’t take back.
God’s word tells us that, Death and life are in the power of the tongue (Proverbs 18:21). What strength our words can have. Through the Bible we learn, The tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. James 3:8.
The things we let escape from out mouths carry a lot of weight. I’ve always been quick to speak my mind. My opinions and ideas often times spew negligently from my mouth without careful thought. I still cringe thinking back to things I’ve said to people I care about over the span of my life. It’s a true reminder for me of how much I’ve been forgiven, and how much I continually depend on grace.
For good or bad, people make assumptions based on the things we say. Jesus taught that our speech flows from our hearts (Luke 6:45). Bad speech is not actually a speech problem…it’s a heart problem. Like all sin.
How important it is for our hearts to be pure so that our thoughts can follow suit. God greatly desires for us to use the power of our tongue to bring glory to His name. He wants us to speak with love and to declare the truth boldly. But you better believe Satan also wants a piece of that action. I believe he tries to keep us in the dark about the power of our words and entices us to use them for harm instead of hope and good.
When your child says, I love you Mama, and means it, those words are worth more than any amount of money. A person’s words can do a world of good. A couple months ago at bedtime, Harley asked me and Jess if we could start a new tradition of saying what we are thankful for each night before bed. All four of us go around telling of blessings and thankfulness and all things good. No matter what kind of day it’s been, by the time we are done, I leave the room feeling bathed in love. All of our words feeding my soul.
This tradition has revealed much to my heart… A critical heart produces a critical tongue. A self righteous heart produces a judgmental tongue. A bitter heart produces an unforgiving tongue. An ungrateful heart produces a grumbling tongue….But a loving heart produces a gracious tongue. A faithful heart produces a truthful tongue. A peaceful heart produces a reconciling tongue. A trusting heart produces an encouraging tongue.
If we remember what we deserve, it’s much easier to keep our hearts humble and our words are chosen more carefully.
Jesus Christ never spoke one wrong word. We should all strive to follow his example. We are all sinners. Let us go to Jesus and ask Him to help us by His spirit to tame our tongues. Let us all seek grace to love as Christ loved, speak as Christ spoke, and walk as Christ walked.
What will you choose to let come out of your mouth today, death or life?