Finding Freedom on the Inside

Weekly Devotional

QUICK TO LISTEN AND SLOW TO SPEAK

     

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouth, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.  Ephesians 4:29 NIV

This verse is a warning to each of us, but it is also a challenge.  

What would it look like if we were like the cartoon characters in the papers who have the conversation bubble above their heads.  This conversation bubble would publish every word that comes from our mouth and put it on display for everyone to see.  

Depending on what we are caught up in talking about or what we might be going through, sometimes words just fly out of our mouths.  It’s part of our natural thinking process.  Our brain processes what is going on around us and then our mouths translate that information to those around us.

The worst time for any of us to speak is when we are mad, upset, or hurt.  The evil one invites us to yell out or to curse without restraint.  James 3:2 says; “We all stumble in many ways.  If anyone is NEVER at fault in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to keep his whole body in check.”  I think it is safe to say that none of us are perfect in any way.  

The truth is however, that no-one is going to feel better by our saying corrupt words and the situation is not going to become better either.  In fact, if anything results at all, more negativity will be added to the mix, and the situation will become even worse, and we will feel even more regret and remorse afterwards.

We need to be careful with the words we chose and use.  James 3:9 says; “With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God’s likeness.”  And in Colossians 3:8 the Apostle Paul gives us this advice and instruction; “But now you must rid yourself of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.” 

So instead of just letting words blurt out of our mouths whenever we want; however we want; no matter what the situation may be; perhaps we should heed the words of James 1:19; “My Dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be QUICK TO LISTEN, SLOW TO SPEAK, and slow to become angry, …”

Let’s take the time to listen to God’s Spirit speaking inside each of us who believe and speak in according with the teaching of that same Holy Spirit.  God’s Spirit will show us how to turn the topic around and how to interject something good into the situation; something which is edifying and uplifting, something which will benefit those who listen.

Pastor Doug