Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Power of the Tongue

I highly recommend the Bible study that we are doing. I know I have told you that before, but it just keeps getting better. It is called The Walk of Repentance. It is put out by Pure Life Ministries. One of the reasons that all four of us appreciate it so much is the fact that he does not lead you into his thought train or his view of things. He takes different topics and gives all sorts of scripture and has you read the scriptures and tell what you learn or what you think it is saying.

This week was on controlling the tongue. The different headings for the days were The Need for Control, Idle Words, Being Argumentative, Grumbling and Confident Assertion. Each day seemed to build on the day before. The tongue or our use of it can lift up and encourage people or kill them. We can't control our tongue. Out of the overflow of the heart is what our mouth speaks. We as Christians can have very strong feelings in certain areas. Often times we try to push these off onto others and even unbelievers. We can be strict and harsh and hard and then wonder why people aren't drawn to the Lord. There is no warmth or encouragement, just a hard set of rules. The tongue can get an argument going. In Proverbs 17:14 says,

"The beginning of strife is as when one letteth out water: therefore leave off contention, before it be meddled with."

When we start to tell others how they ought to think, we open a tiny crack in the dam. Pretty soon the whole thing breaks open and all sorts of ugliness comes dumping out. We are to put away harsh feelings to walk away from strife. We are to be kind, tender hearted and forgiving. We are to fill our heart with good things so that the overflow is good. We need to be considerate and give up our rights for a weaker Christian and we should not expect someone who is an unbeliever to discern spiritual things.

1 Corinthians 13 tells us that we can do all sorts of wonderful things, noble things, but if they are not done with love, then they are worth nothing. Do we have an openness to people and a love that draws them in, or do we hold them at arms length and see if they follow rules.

The Bible study also talked about idle words. We are going to have to give an account for every careless and idle word. By those careless words we will either be condemned or justified. I want to be careful with my words. Many times we speak "Christian things" and phrases to people. We know the right words to say that make us sound oh so spiritual. However, the proof is in the pudding. Can they look at our lives and the basics that we are to be about each and every day and see a spiritually mature person? Or do we speak one thing and live another? What if someone could be a fly on my wall. What would they see and hear out of Marci? If I was to go out and be active in a ministry or a project, and people knew who I was at home, would they even think I should be in that ministry? Is the person serving publicly in the name of the Lord, the same person who I am at home... the REAL me? If I am not faithful in the basics, I personally believe that I have no business being active in a ministry. I have not even got a good foundation down yet. There is a lot of hypocrisy today. People parade and serve as one thing, yet what they are at home is very different. Am I guilty?

I want to be found faithful. I want to hear "Well done thou good and faithful servant, enter into your reward." Lord, guard my tongue. Give me a genuine warmth and love for others. Help me to walk away from strife. Let my words count and not be careless or idle.


Patricia said...

Oh Marci.... What a wonderful post. That 3rd paragraph just spoke bundles to me. How often am I guilty of these things? Espcially when times are difficult. Thank you so much for reminding me how we are to behave as to be an example for Him.

Karen Oros said...

This has been on my heart so much lately! How odd that you wrote this just now. I've been troubled over things,truths or maybe what I at that point in my walk, saw as truth, beliefs, I was sure others must know about so they too could become wise to the Lord's ways... most of them were married women who should have been listening to their husbands ,regarding doctrine,tradition, practice etc.., not me:-( Did I cause division between them , discontentment, doubt, thinking I was giving enlightenment? I cringe and repent when I think of it.:-( Like I said , it's been on my mind:-).
Your Bible study sounds so wonderful! Can you tell me where you got it?