The silent tongue seems the most damaging to me. I have no statistics to prove it, but somehow this one seems to be so far-reaching. People don’t address wrong-doing (basically sin) in the home, at school, or at church. Our ignoring the wrongdoing does not make it disappear. It just gets bigger and more entrenched in children as they become adults. These adults abuse themselves and the people in their circle of influence. They may even abuse or kill strangers depending on how out-of-control they become.
If we as educators, parents, grandparents, pastors, ministers, or even just bold citizens address little Johnny or little Susie when we first notice the wrong behavior, might not our personal worlds and definitely our societies at-large be more peaceful?
I might get flack for this stance! Oh well, at least the discussion will be void of silence!
This is the day that discouragement gets addressed. Pegues comments that discouraging someone else is the evidence that you lack faith in God’s ability.
I am guilty!
I have learned though the more you rehearse God’s Word, your faith increases and you look less at the circumstance and more at God and what He has done. God does not change. A line from one of Tye Tribbet’s songs: “If He did it before, He can do it again”!
Prior to accusing someone, Pegues encourages that you ask a clarifying question and listen to the person’s response before you make a statement! Wow! (Wish I had been practicing this. Most likely would have saved myself several embarrassing, “I’m sorry” moments!)
The self-absorbed tongue can be a trap for me, if I am not careful!
I have much to say… and well if no one else wants to talk… here’s what I think. 🙂
One does tire of the person who has nothing else to talk about but him or herself. Therefore, I make myself focus on what the other person is saying. To ensure that he or she knows that I am listening, I will give cues such as turning towards the person or nodding as he or she speaks. The person’s positive cues back to me keeps me focused on him or her; then, I can get through the conversation.
Too, I remind myself that if all I am doing is talking about me, then I am probably not presenting God to others nor sharing His grace and mercy unto me. For surely, I do not live this life on my merit alone!
How do you keep yourself from always talking about you!
Share your method!
One not need to intimidate others. God controls everything, we do not.
The sooner we make peace with this fact, the easier life becomes.
Pegues write in the Affirmation Box on page 79, “Because God is in control of every aspect of my life and has set my destiny, I have no need to control the behavior of others.”
The “belittling tongue” hit home the hardest! Belittling is defined as saying or thinking that someone or something is unimportant or not very good. 1
I would not eagerly admit to belittling people. But, by the time the author finished with her explanations and examples, I felt “guilty” had been stamped all over me! She got me best with the question of “Are your expectations of others so high that you focus on their shortcomings and not their assets?” *
“But I have something to say”, I retorted. And even when I don’t verbalize my thoughts about how they could be better, I am definitely thinking it.
So what scriptures can I use to squelched this one? I thought of Psalm 17:3 (KJV) “Thou hast proved mine heart; thou hast visited me in the night; thou hast tried me, and shalt find nothing; I am purposed that my mouth shall not transgress.”
I have the feeling I better start searching for several more!
Share your thoughts!
1. Go to the online dictionary, http://www.onelook.com
* See page 58 of 30 Days to Taming Your Tongue by Deborah Smith Pegues
Today has been some day and it’s not even close to being done!
I have had heard one bad tiding or encountered one difficult circumstance after another — from being challenged at work about my decision-making, to learning that a family member could be facing long-term financial challenges, to an acquaintance’s husband having died– all in a few hours time ! 😦
I kept thinking about this challenge. What should I say? How should I be thinking?
I can tell you that at the moment I have not become depressed. God has not had me completing this challenge for nought. I can only assume that I am getting hit all at once because He is testing or He is allowing Satan to test me.
I have failed a many-a-time before. But, by His grace, not this time. I plan by His grace to remain steadfast, focused, and believing He will care for me through it all.
Pray with me, won’t you!