“A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare. The tongue of the wise makes knowledge appealing, but the mouth of a fool belches out foolishness. The Lord is watching everywhere, keeping his eye on both the evil and the good.”
Someone has said, “The tongue has no bones but is strong enough to break a heart. So be careful with your words.” The tongue can be a positive or destructive tool depending upon the words that you allow yourself to utter. The apostle Peter said, “For whoever desires to love life and see good days, let him keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit.” The tongue is considered a very important part of our culture.
Did you realize that your tongue (like your heart) is almost all muscle? But, unlike your heart – which goes through routine and repetitive contractions, all of which you have no control of – your tongue is very much under your control. Listen, you have the choice every single day to speak words of life or words of destruction. Choose your words very carefully.
Have you heard of “Penn and Teller”? For those of you who aren’t familiar with this magic team – they’re pretty good. They not only do magic, but they host their own show. Penn is the tall, talkative part of the team. He has long hair and a very boisterous way of speaking. By contrast, Teller is much shorter and is portrayed in the act as if he were a “mute”. He never speaks at all, but always seems to have a puzzled, naïve look on his face. Penn is an outspoken atheist. He’s very much in your face about his distaste for the church and his disbelief in any kind of god. Penn talks about the man who gave him a Bible having written phone numbers and an email in the front of the Bible he was given. What caught my attention in that video was how touched Penn appeared to be by the gift of that small Gideon Bible. He actually seems to almost tear up at the memory. Now Penn is still an atheist. His life was not changed at that moment by that gift.
But, because that one man used the tongue God gave him to show love and concern for this magician, it visibly shook this atheist’s heart.
This is what God calls us to use our tongues to do. To speak words of life. To show those who are lost that we care for them and that we have a God who loves them. Pray for practical ways today to use your words to bring life and not destruction. Pray for your words to bring honor and glory to God. Take time today to give a shout of encouragement to a friend or a family member. God can use our words to build up the body of Christ. Choose your words wisely today.