Bible Reading: James 3.5-8
So also the tongue is a small part of the body, and yet it boasts of great things. See how great a forest is set aflame by such a small fire! And the tongue is a fire, the very world of iniquity; the tongue is set among our members as that which defiles the entire body, and sets on fire the course of our life, and is set on fire by hell. For every species of beasts and birds, of reptiles and creatures of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by the human race. But no one can tame the tongue; it is a restless evil and full of deadly poison. James 3:5-8
In Harry Potter, Hagrid says, I should not have said that. Hagrid was not good at keeping secrets and this got him into trouble. In the same way I have often said things that I wish I could take back, usually as soon as the words left my mouth.
We can be careless with our words, or we act as verbal arsonists, intending harm to others by what we say out of anger. In either case we all know how words can hurt and we have a responsibility to use our words to bless others.
If you find that your tongue gets you into trouble, you must first recognize the root cause. Jesus tells us that our words overflow from our heart (Matthew 12:34). Our memory verses (Romans 12:1-2) speak to a transformation underway in each of our lives. We all need a heart change in one area or another.
Whether it is anger, pride, bitterness or something else that causes you to stumble in this area, ask God to make that clear to you. Confess this sin to God and surrender it to the Spirit. Finally, share your commitment with another believer who can encourage you. If your words have hurt and you need to ask for forgiveness of another, follow through on that.
God is faithful to change our hearts so that our words build others up according to their needs (Ephesians 4:29) and glorify Him, so that we don’t have to be burdened with the regret of the things we should not have said.
Weekly Memory Verse: Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. 2 Corinthians 5.17