This past Saturday, in men's group, we talked about our words and deeds in life. We never know who is watching and/or listening to our testimony. The Book of James has a lot to say on this matter and really puts it out there for those of us who profess the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior. All of this, being said, relies solely on the fact that without Jesus nothing is possible for life. Words also happens to be a sermon series in our church and has been very powerful on how it is speaking to the body of Christ. After the men's group, one of my fellow elder brothers texted 3 other brothers and myself, "Gents I have loved this song for a long time for many reasons and play it/bump it often in the car with my kids. This morning's discussion immediately made me think about this song and about how often, because of selfishness, I collapse into the evil one's trap (the snare of the fowler), and choose death talk. May we listen. May we plead. Holy Spirit come and convict me/us to do what is not natural for us (unselfishness) and choose to speak life. Love you guys. Pass along"
The song that he is referencing is from Toby Mac called Speak LIfe
Some of the lyrics states:
Some days, life feels perfect.
Other days it just ain't workin.
The good, the bad, the right, the wrong
And everything in between.
Though it's crazy, amazing
We can turn a heart with the words we say.
Mountains crumble with every syllable.
Hope can live or die
So speak Life, speak Life.
To the deadest darkest night.
Speak life, speak Life.
When the sun won't shine and you don't know why.
Look into the eyes of the brokenhearted;
Watch them come alive as soon as you speak hope,
You speak love, you speak...
You speak Life, (oh oh oh oh oh oh) You speak Life. (oh oh oh oh oh oh)
The book of James puts it this way:
James 1:19-27 (NIV)
Listening and Doing
19 My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. 21 Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.
22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.
26 Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless. 27 Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
As I have share one of my favorite poems called Watch Your Words, by Frank Outlaw:
“Watch your thoughts, they become words;
watch your words, they become actions;
watch your actions, they become habits;
watch your habits, they become character;
watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.”
The next time you engage life and speak into it:
- With your spouse
- With your children
- With your work
- With your church
- With your community
- With your neighbor
- Especially with God
Guard your tongue:
James 3 (NIV)
Taming the Tongue
3: 1 Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. 2 We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check.
3 When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. 4 Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. 5 Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. 6 The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.
7 All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, 8 but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.
9 With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. 10 Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. 11 Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? 12 My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.
This past Saturday morning's bible steady convicted me and encouraged me in the following ways with my wife, my kids and my Christian walk:
- Guard my heart, my mind, my soul, my spirit and my tongue
- Guard my thoughts
- Speak words of hope to those that I can influence
- Speak about Christ more often
- When the Holy Spirit puts a word, a thought, a person in my heart and mind - then call that person, text that person, love that person (you never know how much they may need it)
- Speak truth in love to my wife and kids and those in my influence
- Watch my character around those that come across my daily path
- Share the gospel always
As you read through this, think on the things written here and reflect on those things that you have to do, confess, give-up and grow.