Hey Church Family!
Do you ever wish you could hit a rewind button to take back the words you say? I know I have many times. We all say things we regret or wish we never said. The reason we wish we could take words back is because words are powerful. And if you say the wrong words, the power they contain does its work immediately. Think about that. The moment your hurtful words come out of your mouth, the damage and pain they cause is immediate. But if you were to offer an apology, the healing isn't immediate, is it? Our lives have been shaped by words—words that were spoken to you, about you, and over you.
James—the brother of Jesus—wrote about two puzzling dilemmas regarding the mouth. In chapter 3 he notes that something incredibly tiny (our tongue) has immeasurable power. In fact, it is disproportionate in size to the power it possesses. What's crazy is that it holds the potential to set the course and direction of our lives. That's how powerful our words are. He uses three images to portray this dilemma: a bit in a horse's mouth, the rudder of a ship, and a small spark. The fire analogy packs a big punch. Something incredibly tiny can cause immense damage. Our words have the potential to scorch the people around us.
Another puzzling dilemma James brings out is the unpredictable nature of the tongue. He notes that blessing and cursing come from the same mouth. We praise God, but then belittle people made in the image of God. Then he asks a series of questions that have an obvious answer. "Both freshwater and saltwater don't come from the same spring, do they? Can a fig tree produce olives? Can a grapevine produce figs?" (James 3:11-12). The obvious answer is no. His point? Nothing else in all of creation is like the tongue—able to produce two things. With our mouths we can do incredible good or devastating evil. James offers a significant warning for us. We must watch our mouths.
My prayer for you this week is that you would do three things:
Together in Christ,
Notes from the Staff @The Woods