Use your words for good, not evil
From Proverbs: A 31-Day Devotional
We are all guilty of running our mouths and hurting other people. Without even stopping to think, we open our mouths and out come our opinions on someone’s lifestyle, the way they dress, or how they raise their kids.
It’s not like we aren’t all painfully aware how it feels to be the subject of others’ harmful words. If we know how much it hurts to have such words directed at us, why do we allow foul talk in our lives?
We can keep our hearts from tumbling into trouble by avoiding those who tear others down in order to make themselves feel better. When we make fun of other people, we insult God and our actions will be punished (Proverbs 17:5).
God wants more for His children. He calls us to reflect His character through our words and actions (Colossians 3:12-15). And, Jesus Himself said we should love one another the same way that He loved us.
One way we show Jesus’ love is by carefully choosing our words to love and encourage each other. We are to fill our friends with love, support, and encouragement (Proverbs 17:9, Proverbs 17:17-18). And when we hurt a friend, we are to reconcile the situation, admitting we were wrong and working to make things right (Proverbs 17:19-20, Matthew 5:24).
It can take time to tame our tongues. But a good first step is understanding the power of our words, and learning to see what we say as a representation of what Jesus would say.
- What did Proverbs 17 teach you about the power of your words?
- Have you been using your words to tear others down or to encourage and love them?
- What’s one thing you know you need to start doing or stop doing based on what you read?