I admit. I enjoy talking. This wouldn’t be a surprise to anyone who knows me. While I try to use my words for good, I’m human, and there are those times when I say something hurtful. I always regret those moments. I know that everyone does this, but I spend much of my day teaching, and a lot of the rest of my time is taken with family, friends and ministering. So, I’m around people a lot. I love interacting with others. There are those who even seek me out, to talk, which I love. So, the last thing I want to do is say something thoughtless.
There is an overwhelming number of verses warning us to watch what comes out of our mouths. Do you think God is trying to tell us something? Ephesians 4:29 tells us, “Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.”
Everything? Yes, the Word says, “everything”. Seems like an impossible task, but how much of that thought stems from a lack of self-control? Though I still have a long way to go in improving in this area, over the years, I have tried to think more before I speak. This is possible to do, more often than we would like to admit.
King Solomon was known for his wisdom, a wisdom he acquired through his obedience to God and a desire to live in His ways. King Solomon stated that there is “a time to tear and a time to mend. A time to be quiet and a time to speak” in Ecclesiastes 3:7. Are there times when we want to say something, but shouldn’t? Absolutely.
Learning when to speak and when to be silent can only come from asking God for help. It isn’t something that comes naturally. We are told in 2 Timothy 1:7, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” If you’re struggling in this area, ask God to help you. Also, be real and ask those who are close to you to help keep you accountable, to help you when you’re not aware of these slip ups.
Too often, when we say words we shouldn’t, we follow it with, “Just saying. . .” We could all spend a little less time saying, and a little more time listening, a little less time providing our input and a little more time trying to understand others.
Imagine a world where the words we speak, write, text, type, and post were meant to edify those around us. Imagine a world where our words make a difference in the lives of others, by inspiring them to be all God means them to be. Imagine a world where we all spoke life.
Proverbs 18:21 reminds us, “The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences.” Imagine a world where we reap the consequences of thoughtful words to one another! Let’s do more than just imagine. Let’s speak life. Just saying.
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