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Taming the Tongue

But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. James 3:8

My husband and I helped to chaperone a middle school dance last night. The last one for our oldest daughter before she heads off to high school. The kids were decked out and looked amazing, but one little girl couldn’t seem to stop making ugly comments to another.

Now, these weren’t just comments behind her back. No, these were directly to her face. I was appalled she thought this was okay, but we’ve all done this haven’t we? No? Just me. I know I’ve stuck my foot in my mouth time and time again. And I know my teenage years were the worst. It wasn’t long ago that we sat down to talk to our own daughter about this.

But at some point, we must mature as believers and realize that our words do matter. Proverbs 18:21 says, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” That’s a powerful verse. Within our tongues is the power of life and death. What we say matters.

It could be as simple as two girls being catty, but it’s in every conversation. It matters how we speak to our spouse. Are we lifting them up? Are we always threatening divorce when any little thing goes wrong or are we working through a solution?

What about with our kids? When they make a mistake do we try to help them learn from it or do we just condemn their choices? Do we convey that we love them and are proud of them?

What about ourselves? How do we speak about ourselves and our body image? What about our intelligence?

What about our other relationships? Are we thinking before we speak?

To me, this is one of the hardest things. You see, I love to talk, and my mouth can get me in a lot of trouble. It has taken many years to not say everything I think and to everybody, and trust me, I still mess up. Thank you, Jesus, for grace. Everyday I have to come to Him for help, and everyday He walks me through despite my downfalls. I will choose each day to speak life.

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