By Barry Bennett
“You are snared by the words of your mouth; You are taken by the words of your mouth.” —Proverbs 6:2
“A fool's mouth is his destruction, and his lips are the snare of his soul.” —Proverbs 18:7
Some of my greatest regrets have to do with things I’ve said—a thoughtless comment, a moment of frustration, or an attempt to be funny; words I wish I could take back.
Words are such powerful things.
Perhaps I enjoy writing so much because I have time to consider what I’ve written before sharing it with others. Some things I write and leave “on the shelf” for a period of time before re-reading them. I usually make changes before sharing those writings. Time gives the opportunity to reflect, calm down, or consider other perspectives or information.
We seldom do that when speaking, however. We tend to blurt out our first feelings. Little thought and meditation go into much of what we say.
Have you ever noticed the times Jesus was asked a question and He responded with an answer that made it seem He must not have been listening? But He was. He was listening to the Spirit.
Jesus’ answer came from the Spirit of God and was not simply His first random thought. He spoke what the questioner needed to hear, not what the flesh wanted to say.
“In the multitude of words sin is not lacking, But he who restrains his lips is wise. The tongue of the righteous is choice silver; The heart of the wicked is worth little. The lips of the righteous feed many.” —Proverbs 10:19-21
We can choose the lips of the righteous and a tongue of choice silver. Let’s learn to speak from the Spirit and not from the flesh. Perhaps we should follow the old saying and count to ten before we speak—or fifty.
Learn to be a giver of life with your words.