"Whoever winks the eye causes trouble, but a babbling fool will come to ruin." [Proverbs 10:10]
"The wise lay up knowledge, but the mouth of a fool brings ruin near." [Proverbs 10:14]
"When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent." [Proverbs 10:19]
"The lips of the righteous feed many, but fools die for lack of sense." [Proverbs 10:21]
"With his mouth the godless man would destroy his neighbor, but by knowledge the righteous are delivered." [Proverbs 11:9]
"Whoever belittles his neighbor lacks sense, but a man of understanding remains silent." [Proverbs 11:12]
"An evil man is ensnared by the transgressions of his lips, but the righteous escapes from trouble." [Proverbs 12:13]
"The vexation of a fool is known at once, but the prudent ignores an insult." [Proverbs 12:16]
"Whoever guards his mouth preserves his life; he who opens wide his lips comes to ruin." [Proverbs 13:3]
"By the mouth of a fool comes a rod for his back, but the lips of the wise will preserve them" [Proverbs 14:3]
"A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger." [Proverbs 15:1]
Some of these verses were read on Sunday at church as part of a sermon about the destruction our mouths can do. After almost every verse read, my heart seemed to pound harder and the beat seemed to get faster. I knew the Lord was speaking to me. So, I prayed and read His word and added a few more proverbs that rang in my heart.
If any of you know me personally, you have probably experienced the sharpness of my words, the harshness of my tone and the arrogant delivery of my speech. I swear, it's the thorn in my side.
We all struggle with something. We can't be perfect, because only Jesus is perfect, and because of His great love for us, He will mold us more into His perfect image. I have seen evidence of that, and some close to me can testify to it as well. I have shared in other blogs how in the past, I have used my words to manipulate, rip people apart, discourage, slander, mock and lie. But in the last couple years, Jesus has turned my manipulating words, into words of wisdom; my destroying words, to build people up; my discouraging words to encourage; my slandering words, to praise; my mocking words to confess and my lyng words to speak truth. Only Jesus could do that. I still mess up. Big time. But I can't dwell in my sin, I have to move forward in the forgiveness my Savior offers me. This past week, I feel God spoke more clearly to me concerning my tongue, and I hope to see no more of the poison it sometimes produces. It says in James 3:8 that "no human being can tame the tongue". I am a great example of that. Jesus can transform our words meant for evil, and turn them into words of holiness. James 3 also says in verses 6-7 that, "...The tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, staining our whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life, and set on fire by hell." More of James 3: "[The tongue] is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God. From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers, these things ought not to be so. Does a spring forth from the same opening both fresh and salt water? Can a fig tree, my brothers, bear olives, or a grapevine produce figs? Neither can a salt pond yield fresh water."
Apart from Jesus, I am a babbling fool that will come to ruin. Apart from Jesus I am full of ugliness. Apart from Jesus, I will tear people down and build myself up. When surrendered to Him, my babbling turns into words of gentleness, kindness and grace. When surrendered to Him, I am full of Him, who makes me righteous. When surrendered to Him, I will build people up through love and encouragement and humble myself and exalt the only One who deserves to be exalted.
Jesus, may you transform the poison that still remains on my tongue into gentleness, kindness, love, humility, encouragement, praise, and truth. Jesus, I don't want my tongue to hinder, in anyway, what you are doing in and through me. I surrender all that I am able to say- I ask that all the words coming from my mouth would honor You, exalt You and please You. Amen.
I share this with you because I am letting God use my ugliness for His glory. He will turn what was meant for evil and use it for His good.