I have always been the type of person that could talk mostly to anyone. I have been told that I could make friends with a tree if I had to just so I would be able to talk to someone. Realizing after many years of hearing that comment, talking has been, and in certain instances, hasn’t been one of my good qualities. I had always thought with the verse “Be still and know that I am God” there should also be a verse that says “Be quiet, and know that I am God,” for I think the two go hand in hand.
So many times in my life I found myself saying the wrong thing because I hadn’t learned to just be quiet and listen, or I was nervous at the quietness in the room with whom I was talking to. I was even nervous in my alone time with the Lord because I knew I wasn’t living according to His will and so I thought the more I talked I could “cover” up how I was living, not giving Him a word in edge wise to even lead me in His loving ways. I would also joke around alot with my co-workers thinking it harmless until I came across a scripture one day that spoke volumes to why I felt like I had hit a dead end with my walk with the Lord. James 1:26 says “If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless.” Another one that convicted me which I know many people have a hard time with is in Ephesians 5:4 “Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving.” And to put it in perspective, I know when guys get around other guys they don’t talk all polite and nice about how innocent and sweet that girl looked at the party or when one of your co-workers says something to be funny by putting you down, your flesh automatically wants to put them “in their place.” Taming your tongue isn’t easy and it doesn’t take a day, a week, or a month. As with everything with your relationship with the Lord it is a day by day discipline, renewing of your mind, spirit, and tongue.
Now saying that, if all you do is go home and watch reruns of “Jersey Shore”, or “The Real World,” you are going to fill your mind with junk and what you usually fill your mind with comes out of your mouth…trust me on this. If all you do is hang around people that talk like sailors, you are going to talk like them….you will be the product of your environment. “But they are my friends, Cis, I can’t not be friends with them. Even Jesus was friends with the untouchables,” you say. True, Jesus hung out with the ones no one else would, but He did it to share who He is and why He came…are you sharing the same?
I leave you with this example given in James 3:4-7 “Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. Likewise the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and creatures of the sea are being tamed and have been tamed by man, but no man can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.” That is a huge, powerful tool of the body that, according to scripture, is “full of deadly poison” and if not bridled down within the Holy Spirit everyday can wreck havoc in not just your life, but those around you as well.
I encourage you today to take a look at your language. How would you say it is? Can you go through your day without the ocassional curse word or do they fill your vocabulary? How about the coarse joking? Are you the crude joke teller or the one laughing. Either one, to me, needs evaluating. You are just adding fuel to the fire when you laugh at a crude joke telling that person his behavior is acceptable in your eyes. Laughing is from the Lord and I love a good laugh, but coarse joking leads more to just the occassional laugh if you over time open doors to that kind of mindset. Decide today to bring your tongue under the authority of Christ, digging into His word and allowing the Holy Spirit to take the reins of your speech.
I challenge you to abide in the Word, filling your mind with Godly things one day and in another not abide in His Word and see what kind of things come out of your mouth. I can promise you the day you are abiding and the day you are not will be worlds apart and you will see what kind of poison James was refering to. You will either choose to continue spewing that poison or start breeding life….choose wisely!