Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – September 17, 2015
Guest Writer: Meet my son-in-law Tripp Prince. We are blessed to have him as our guest writer.
For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God. From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. James 3:7-10
Have you ever said something and then immediately wished you could take it back? If you’re like me, you’ve done this more times than you can count! So often we speak without thinking. We hear words come out of our mouths and think, “Where did that come from?” At times this can lead to simple embarrassment or a laugh between friends, yet often our words are the source of deep pain and brokenness. Perhaps even now as you read this you feel in your heart the wounds of someone’s words toward you or the burden of having wounded another with your words.
As James reminds us, each of us is capable of great good and devastating harm. We can speak words of blessing, encouragement, and hope over those we love and those who need to be uplifted. Yet we can then turn around and with the same tongue lash out in anger, put someone down so we look better than we are, or simply lie and deceive to get what we want.
This capacity for good and evil should remind us that our lives are always works in progress. No matter how long we’ve followed Christ or served him, we never fully arrive at maturity; there are still parts of our hearts that need to be given over to his will for our lives. When we speak a blessing over others, it is a sign of God’s renovating work in our hearts. On the other hand, when we speak harmful words, they reveal motives in our hearts that are not yet conformed to the will of God.
The tongue makes public that which the heart keeps private.
If you find yourself struggling to tame your tongue, don’t simply focus on behavior modification. The Lord doesn’t want us to merely change our actions, but desires that our changed behavior come from a heart that has been set on fire with love for Him! Therefore, let the Lord into the deep, dark places of your heart and allow Him to bring about real and lasting change. As we do, the Lord will renew our hearts and place words of joy and hope upon our lips. Then we will be able to join with the words of Scripture and proclaim, “my heart was glad, and my tongue rejoiced” (Acts 2:26).
Prayer: Father, help us learn to tame our tongues by fully opening our hearts and lives to your transforming grace.
Application: How does God want to tame my tongue? Who needs my words of affirmation?
Related Readings: 2 Samuel 23:2; Job 27:4; Psalm 34:13; Proverbs 15:2
Post/Tweet this today: The tongue makes public that which the heart keeps private. #encouragingwords #wisdomhunters
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Does not Ezekiel 36:25-27 ( 25 Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. 26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27 I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them.)tells us what to expect if we met the conditions to be saved (Gal5:24) ?As true disciples of Christ’s are we not given a new heart? In Romans 12:2 are we not instructed renew reprogram out all of Satan’s lies that we accepted as truths and replace them with God’s truths?
So is not the battle ground not fought in the mind and the heart reveals what we have accepted as truths? Is that not why we are given God’s armor to keep Satan out of the Holy Spirits temple? Is that not why we are instructed to take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ and to keep our minds on things of the spirit (2Cor 10)?
Much agape Ed
Thank you so much for responding after reading “Taming the Tongue”. All I can say is Yes, Yes, and Yes! You have reminded us what God’s Word says and how we “should be” with a “new heart and a new spirit”. (Ezekiel 36:26). Ed, thank you for those great reminders of scripture that should help us as we struggle with the human-ness of falling back into behavior that is not always obedient to God.
As Tripp stated in the devotional, “This capacity for good and for evil should remind us that our lives are always a work in progress. No matter how long we’ve followed Him, we never fully arrive at maturity; there are still parts of our hearts that need to be given over to His will for our lives”.
Gracious, “a work in progress” is an understatement sometimes……
Thank you, Ed. I speak for myself and for others in the Wisdom Hunter’s family as I read your post and hold onto His Truths in an effort to not only “tame the tongue”, but also, live with our new heart and new spirit.
Believing and trusting~
“Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.” Colossians 3:9-10
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