“He who loves purity of the heart and whose speech is gracious, the king is his friend.” –Proverbs 22:11
“He who guards his mouth and his tongue, guards his soul from troubles.” –Proverbs 21: 23
“Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” –Ephesians 4:29
“For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body. If we put bits into the mouths of horses so that they obey us, we guide their whole bodies as well. Look at the ships also: though they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs. So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great things. How great a forest is set ablaze by such a small fire!” –James 3:2-8
“Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking deceit.” –Psalm 34:13
“Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips!” –Psalm 141:3
“It is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but what comes out of the mouth; this defiles a person.” –Matthew 15:11
“Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.” –Colossians 4:6
And I could go on…
The Bible is filled with scripture after scripture about the importance of our words and the power of our tongue.
I know that I often downplay the influence and impact that my words have on my day and on my mindset.
Think about the last time that you were anxious, upset, angry or experiencing a painful time in your life. Maybe it’s now.
What kinds of things filled your mouth? What did you speak about?
Even if having a conversation with yourself, did it go something like this: “I’m just so anxious. I don’t know what’s going to happen and I feel completely helpless.”
Or maybe: “I am so angry. I hate him (or her). How could they do this to me??”
Or: “I just can’t do this anymore. I am exhausted. I need some me-time.”
Do you see the pattern here?
Just READING these responses makes me feel mentally defeated for my day and it’s barely begun!
Like the scripture in James says, the tongue is a very small part of our body but it is the rudder that steers the ship.
Putting two and two together, if you want to have a positive, victorious day: You speak POSITIVE and VICTORIOUSLY!
If you want to sit on your couch with a bowl of Ben & Jerrys and look up quotes on Pinterest (don’t be ashamed), You will feel helpless!
The same goes with your friendships and relationships: The tongue is a rudder that steers the direction in which they go.
If we want to have fruitful relationships with other people, we must provide encouraging words that are soothing to the soul and pleasing to the Lord.
Let me assure you with this: I know it is not always EASY.
But, remember that words may be forgiven and forgotten, but the pain they cause is extremely real.
We are to provide words that are like honey to a body rather than salt to a wound.
How have you steered your ship so far today? Are you letting your circumstances determine which way your rudder goes?
Think of it this way: If you were sailing a ship and the waves became treacherous, would you choose to take greater control of the rudder or pay less attention to its’ direction?
You would be alert and focused on how you steered your ship.
The same goes with life.
The more helpless our circumstances feel, the more important our tongue and rudder becomes.
Choose to believe in the One who has overcome it all and speak encouragement into your situation and the lives of others.
Do not underestimate the power of the tongue; like a rudder, it is small but mighty and powerful.
So, let me encourage you with some truth about your day as you get started!
You are LOVED.
You are FORGIVEN.
You are CHOSEN.
You are REDEEMED.
You are PRECIOUS.
You are BEAUTIFUL.
You are WORTHY.
You are HIS.
And lastly… You have a VOICE.