Keep It Under Control!! A Blog by Deacon Bruce McElrath

Keep it under control !!!
What you say and what you don’t say are both important. To use proper speech you must not only say the right words at the right time but also not say what you shouldn’t.
Examples of an untamed tongue include gossiping, putting others down, bragging manipulating, and false teaching, exaggerating, complaining, flattering, and lying. Before you speak, ask, is what I want to say true? Is it necessary? Is it kind?
In the letter of James, James compares the damage the tongue can do to a raging fire – the tongue’s wickedness has its source in hell itself. The uncontrolled tongue can do terrible damage.
Satan uses the tongue to divide people and pit them against one another. Idle and hateful words are damaging because they spread destruction quickly, and no one can stop the results once they are spoken.
We dare not be careless with what we say, thinking we can apologize later, because even if we do, the scars remain. A few words spoken in anger can destroy a relationship that took years to build.
Before you speak, remember that words are like fire – you can neither control nor reverse the damage they can do.
If no human being can control the tongue, why bother trying? Even though we may not achieve perfect control of our tongues, the Holy Spirit will help us learn self –control.
Remember that we are not fighting the tongue’s fire in our own strength. The Holy Spirit will give us increasing power to monitor and control what we say, so that when we are offended, the Spirit will remind us of God’s love, and we won’t react in a hateful manner. When we are criticized, the Spirit will heal the hurt and help us to not lash out.
Our contradictory speech often puzzles us. At times our words are right and pleasing to God, but at other times they are violent and destructive.
Which of these speech patterns reflects our true identity? We were made in God’s image, but the tongue gives us a picture of our basic sinful nature. God works to change us from the inside out. When the Holy Spirit purifies a heart, He gives self-control so that the person will speak with words that will please God.
With God’s help we can proceed in our quest of helping, serving and encouraging others with good, wholesome, clean words and actions.