When we think of the most destructive weapons we generally think of huge bombs or nuclear bombs however the weapon that daily does more destruction than all the bombs is one we all possess. It is also the most difficult weapon to control hence leading to hurt, anger, cruelty, criticism and a host of other issues. Of course, I am speaking about the tongue.
The ancient scriptures say, “Be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry” Good advice in todays world of war with words. Truly listen, think and then speak. Especially if the words you hear are mean or antagonistic. Remember criticism is far more of a commentary on the giver than the receiver. This is why it is important to not only hear what they are saying but understand why they are saying it. Why someone says or does something is far more important than what they say or do.
However with regards to living everyday life why do we need to think before we speak?
- It directs my direction
As a bit in a horse’s mouth controls its direction and a small rudder of a large ship turns the ship where the captain wishes so our tongue though small can direct the way of a conversation.
- It can destroy what I have developed
Just think of the damage that has come from a conversation. Just as a small spark can start a huge forest fire, one untruth or one bit of gossip can change a relationship of years.
- It reveals who I really am
Isn’t it interesting how words of encouragement and criticizing come out of the same mouth? What kind of words does your tongue create and what does it reveal?
A negative Tongue reveals a fearful heart
An unfriendly Tongue reveals a hard heart
A critical tongue reveals a bitter heart
A boastful heart reveals an insecure heart
A filthy tongue reveals an impure heart
An encouraging tongue reveals a happy heart
A gentle tongue reveals a loving heart
A controlled tongue reveals a peaceful heart
Isn’t it interesting how we control so well almost every part of or body but the tongue seems to have a mind of its own? We can tame all kinds of wild animals but taming the tongue escapes us. So how do we control this uncontrollable tongue?
First we need to realize the it really is not a tongue problem but a heart problem. You can’t get fresh water out of a polluted well nor can an apple tree bear oranges. What comes out of the well spout is what’s inside the well. The fruit of the tree comes from what the tree REALLY is.
I have been involved with Prison Fellowship for years. Their purpose is to rehabilitate prisoners so they can assimilate into the “Outside” world and not end up back in prison.
Their secret to radically lowering the recidivism rate is not changing their actions but changing their hearts. When the heart changes everything changes!
Change the heart, change the tongue and change your direction as well as the outcome.
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