(Written by Ray Smith)
Words often get us into trouble!
I haven’t counted the number of times in ” Proverbs” where our words/tongue/talk, are mentioned. But, this theme is one of the biggest in “Proverbs’. ( Maybe you can check out the number of times our words and speech are referenced ),
Words always produce something. They have consequences for good or ill. As the proverb says, ” The tongue has the power of life or death ” ( Prov 18: 212 ).
Being human, we’ve all experienced times when we’ve said things out of order, or inappropriately, and seen negative consequences. We’ve all wished we could recall those words and cancel them out. But, once spoken, we’ve given them wings.
What wisdom then is there in ” Proverbs ” to help us in what we say? Here are just 4 proverbs.
“He who guards his lips, guards his life, but he who speaks rashly will come to ruin”.
We can set boundaries on the things we talk about and decide what we do or don’t comment upon.
“When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise”.(Proverbs 10:19)
We can choose not to go on and on about a subject, issue, or person.
“Do you see a man who speaks in haste, there is more hope for a fool than for him.”(Proverbs 29:20).
We can step back, and give ourselves time before we speak.
“He who answers before listening…..that is his folly and his shame”.(Proverbs 18: 13).
We can make a commitment to listen first.
Each of these proverbs prescribes actions we can all take in respect to what we say.
Because spoken words can’t be taken back, it’s better to act before we speak than repair damage done after.
# ” Father we confess the things we have said recently that we shouldn’t have said. Thank you for your forgiveness. Freshly bless those who have been on the receiving end of our words and give us your grace to heal any relational damage “.
# We pray for the ongoing resourcing of those who are unemployed and the proprietors of businesses that continue to struggle. We think of those in our church community in these situations.
# Encourage our tertiary students as they normalise their studies.
# Give your wisdom to chaplains in our schools as they deal with student anxieties and uncertainties… Especially Amy and Kane.
SONG “Let the words of my mouth, and the meditations of my heart, be acceptable in your sight, O Lord”.