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The power of words

Words are very powerful! They can do a lot of damage in a hurry. Have you ever said something that you regret? Have you ever been hurt by something someone else said? No doubt, words can be dangerous, devastating and painful. James tells us that we can tame wild animals, but not the “tongue”… 8 but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. James 3:8

Getting a handle on our mouths or “tongues”, can save us, and others around us, a whole lot of trouble in life. So how can we tame the tongue, guard our words? The truth is, we can’t; but God can! If you want to get a handle on your mouth, ask God to help you! He doesn’t want you to use your mouth to cause pain, to hurt others or to curse anyone. In fact, the Bible is really clear about that… 9 With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. 10 Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. James 3:9-10

It is convicting to think that we would use our mouths to praise God and also to hurt other people. That should not happen. We can honor God with our words when we:

W – Wait to speak… Be slow to speak. (James 1:19) Just take a deep breath. Chill out before you blow out. Carefully consider what you are about to say. Take some time before you respond to criticism or gossip. That includes emails social media posts.

O - Organize thoughts… Think before you speak. Gather your thoughts. Ask yourself, is this true, helpful, inspiring, necessary and kind? If not, it might be best to say nothing at all.

R – Respond maturely. Guard words. Use discretion with what you say. Avoid unhealthy, unfair, immature tactics like spewing harmful words, cursing or raising your voice.

D – Drop negatives. Do away with any negative words. They aren’t helpful, inspiring, necessary or kind. Don’t tear down with your words…

S – Speak positively! Use your words to build others up! (James 4:29)

No doubt we all stumble, nobody is perfect. (James 3:2). But with God’s help, we can get a handle on that restless evil tongue that can cause us a lot of problems! For much more, listen to FaithWorks Part 7 - Guarding Words.


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