I enjoy listening as Diane reads to our little grandchildren, The Wide-Mouthed Frog. Their eyes get as wide as the mouth of the frog. It is a cute book with a cute message. The wide-mouthed frog learns an important lesson about controlling his tongue in that book.
This past Sunday in his sermon, Jonathon Barnes was speaking from I Timothy 4 where Paul addresses the need for Timothy to set an example for the believers. I Timothy 4:12, “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity. In a moment of transparency (one of several in the message) Jonathon said, “I could stop right there. I need to control my mouth.” Most of us in the audience could relate.
James calls the tongue a “restless evil full of deadly poison.” Of the six things the Lord hates in Proverbs 6:16-19, notice how many of them have reference to the tongue. If we want to dwell in the sanctuary of the Lord (Psalm 15:1-3) we must “speak the truth from the heart” and we must “have no slander on our tongue.” It can be a real problem.
James says that the tongue has the power to direct, to destroy, and to delight. He indicates that our tongue is the rudder that steers the ship of our lives. How do we get this under control and keep from being wide-mouthed people?
I mess up daily in this area. One thing I try to do each day is pray back to the Lord the words of David in Psalm 141:3 –
“O Lord, place a watch over my mouth,
guard the door of my lips.”
Just a few common sense things:
- Think before you speak.
- Speak less.
- Always use the standard of truth balanced with kindness.
- Say even critical words at the right time, in the right place and in the right way.
Please use the comment section below to add things that you may have found helpful in controlling your tongue. It will help us all out in this important area, and we will be very grateful.