Ephesians 4:29 – Watch the way you talk. Let nothing foul or dirty come out of your mouth. Say only what helps, each word a gift. (MSG)
Our dog Simon loved food. He would eat almost anything! One time he consumed a whole pound of cooked bacon — our supper. A loaf of bread, a chocolate cake that wasn't even for his birthday, plus all the candles and a fresh blueberry pie, every one ended up in his stomach. Another day he gobbled up two dozen monster-sized cherry cookies, baked for the church coffee house — each one — chomp, chomp, chomp! We really loved our dog Simon but his mouth sure got him into a lot of trouble.
Sometimes our mouths can get us into a lot of trouble too. When we use them the wrong way they have the potential to gobble up people on the inside, for words can bite. Mean and unkind words, filthy words, thoughtless words have the power to gobble up the good feelings people have about themselves, leaving them feeling all chewed up inside — consumed by feelings of inadequacy, self-hatred, depression and the like. Have you ever felt this way when someone used their mouth the wrong way and bit you with hurtful words?
The truth is that God never wants anyone to feel eaten up. He loves us so very much and He wants each one to be whole and healthy inside. This is why within His Word He speaks clearly to us concerning our mouths and the right way to use them. Instead of using words that bite and gobble others up, He says: Watch the way you talk … say only what helps, each word a gift. Now isn't that something to think about!?
Prayer: Lord God and wonderful Father, let us remember the pain of hurtful words that have been inflicted upon us, that we might remember to watch the way we talk, saying only what helps others, each word a gift. Let us also remember to forgive those who do or have hurt us in this way, that we might receive your healing and forgiveness now and in the future when we in the weakness of our humanity may hurt others by the wrongful use of our mouths. In Jesus' name. Amen.
James 3:3-6 – A bit in the mouth of a horse controls the whole horse. A small rudder on a huge ship in the hands of a skilled captain sets a course in the face of the strongest winds. A word out of your mouth may seem of no account, but it can accomplish nearly anything — or destroy it! It only takes a spark, remember, to set off a forest fire. A careless or wrongly placed word out of your mouth can do that. By our speech we can ruin the world, turn harmony into chaos, throw mud on a reputation, send the whole world up in smoke and go up in smoke with it, smoke right from the put of hell. (MSG)
Mark 11:25 – And when you assume the posture of prayer, remember that it's not all asking. If you have anything against someone, forgive — only then will your heavenly Father be inclined to also wipe your slate clean of sins. (MSG)