James series – “The Litmus Test for life”
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.
As we have seen a test-failing tongue condemning, controlling, corrupting and compromising. So what do we do if we find ourselves struggling to pass the tongue test? Let me give several principles that if put into practice will moved your mouth from misery to ministry:
- Confess your sinful speech.
Admit your sin and seek God’s forgiveness as well as the forgiveness of those whose hearts you have hurt. You can’t tame the tongue it comes when we submit to the Holy Spirit. It starts with Salvation and continues with submission. ABC salvation. Its more than just trusting Jesus for eternal life its letting Him be the Lord of your life. Because either Satan or the Holy Spirit is controlling your speech.
- T-H-I-N-K….. before you speak.
“T” Is it True? – “H” Is it Helpful? – “I” Is it Inspiring? – “N” Is it Necessary? -“K” Is it Kind?
Thoughtless tongues react, but tongues trained in truth respond. Learn to filter your thoughts through truth before they hit your tongue. Why do we react instead of respond because we are filtered things through our feelings instead of our Father.
- Let your life do the talking not your lips.
Learn to exercise your life more than your lips. Don’t mouth what you don’t model. Don’t use facebook as a platform for posting your pain or you people problems. Talk to people not about people, face to face not facebook.
- Learn to muzzle your mouth
Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt. Lean on wisdom more than words. Because wisdom doesn’t just know what words to use but when.