James 1:26 If anyone among you thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this one’s religion is useless.
James 3:5,8 Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things. See how great a forest a little fire kindles! . . . But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.
Ecclesiastes 23:1 “You shall not circulate a false report. Do not put your hand with the wicked to be a unrighteous witness.”
Psalm 15:3 He who does not backbite with his tongue, nor does evil to his neighbor, nor does he take up a reproach against his friend; . . . He who does these things shall never be moved.
Proverbs 17:20 He who has a deceitful heart finds no good, and he who has a perverse tongue falls into evil.
Proverbs 20:19 He who goes about as a talebearer reveals secrets; therefore do not associate with one who flatters with his lips.
As you can see the Lord has a great deal to say about that nasty little muscle that resides within our mouths….
Our bodies are pretty impressive. There are all sorts of cells, different muscles, tendons, cartilage pieces, and all working together. We have so many muscles that we have to think about moving—it’s almost unconscious thinking, but not really. Our eyes–we can decide to not blink spontaneously if we are playing “stare down” with another. But many of our muscles move without any conscious thought from us. We do just get up and pour water from the faucet, flip a switch to turn on our electric, but even if we have not given much CONSCIOUS thought to this, we have thought out the process and moved on it. Those are actions that do require we give some thought to get those muscles moving.
But we have so many muscles that function without ANY conscious thought from us—unless there is a problem and something is not functioning properly. But your heart just beats, sending out oxygenated blood throughout your body, working in conjunction with your lungs which breathe in and out. Can you think about the action and control it? Maybe, a little. But 99% of the time it just happens, God has ordained we have normal breathing patterns, slow and fairly regular, which can increase as needed, slow when we don’t need the rapidness of blood flowing to muscles faster with exercise or stress. But generally, these muscles work without our conscious thought or control. Pretty remarkable machines we have!
Yet the most headstrong muscle we have is the tongue. It is not always obedient, kind, gracious or free of sin. It can lie, deceive, gossip, speak nasty things, say hateful judgments, and be a very unruly misbehaving muscle. I work at reining mine in often.
It is not often I spew out hateful things now. But I sometimes feel gossip wanting to leap from my mouth and have to mentally scold myself and remind myself that is not what God wants me to speak.
Gossip is hurtful, and often a lie, and it spreads like the awful California fires. Those words leap and fly far and often, creating more and more distortion. It does not absolve you if someone told you a story and you repeat it verbatim….it is gossip. It is something I struggle with, and yet I must say I thank the Holy Spirit much more often for reminding me to hold my tongue, than when I let it freely engage in this misbehavior.
It used to be fairly common for me to scold myself and confess even though God had already heard and probably cringed that I was still being disobedient. But I am reminded that I did not let anything slip, I did not engage in a gossip session, and usually will say I don’t want to talk about a certain subject or person. No kudos for me; this is totally the Holy Spirit reminding me of the mercy and grace shown me, and that I need to show that to others also. And engaging in gossip is ungraceful and hurtful. And most important, sinful.
Thank You for The Holy Spirit and hearing His reminders when I could slip into sin. You are helping ‘mybellaviews’ grow.