|"Those who control their tongue will have a long life; opening your mouth can ruin everything." Proverbs 13:3 NLT
"I just couldn't help myself." - "I had to say something."might be famous words that are followed by painful consequences.We all have been there; letting our mouth speak before our brain fully engages. In this week's passage we are encouraged toexercise restraint or risk the consequenceof "ruining everything."
Will Roger's was quoted as saying "When you know you’re full of bull, keep your mouth shut." A humorous expression filled with a bit of wisdom. While our first impulse is to say something, respond, or offer our opinion, it is wise to control our tongue. I remember growing up hearing the correction of "watch your mouth," maybe even more times than I care to admit. I lacked the understanding then, but know the value now of controlling the tongue. Watch your mouth is not an expression we hear much anymore, perhaps lost in the efforts to cast off verbal restraint in our modern culture.
In this time that we live, the pressure is great to take a position and make it know. There is pressure to not remain silent. While there are certainly times that we need to speak up, we should do so carefully not impulsively. I want to remind you that words spoken cannot be taken back, they will exist forever, and foolishness is often memorialized on social media for all to see. Be careful, opening your mouth, or typing with your fingers can "ruin everything."
I was listening to the news the other day and I started paying attention to the number of times someone said "I think" or various versions of that statement. They were too numerous to count. I began to consider that while I am interested in truth, and do like to pay attention to current events, I don't really need to know what so many people who I don't even know, think about them.
Rather than being drawn into arguments or calculating how we might get our position on matters to be considered, we would do well to heed the words of James. "So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God." James 1:19-20 NKJV
Our anger, expressed in words or writing, isn't likely to change anyone's opinion. But displaying God's love just might. I had a friend who used to say that "It is better to be loving than it is to be right." Wise words for us to consider before we start speaking. Let us not be known for our opinions, let us be know for our love for one another.
"Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.” John 13:35 NLT
This week make an effort to think before you speak.
In His Hands,