James 3

As we are approaching the new year, most people are thankful we have made it through 2020. Also, they are looking forward to 2021 by making New Year’s resolutions. Most people are taking an inventory of their life and seeing where they want to change. The most common goals seem to fall into how people view themselves physically, like losing weight or working out more. I know I should certainly focus on these areas of my life, but even more important is the taming of my tongue. This is something that I am constantly having to check myself on. It is easy for me to criticize, in writing or speech, the way someone believes or does things. I know I have the ability to be just downright mean about it.

but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.

James 3:8

James the brother of Jesus has laid out a few characteristics of a mature believer. In the first two chapters of this letter, a mature believer is seen to be one who is patient in trouble (James 1) and practices the truth (James 2). The third trait of a mature believer is their ability to control their tongue. I know if I do not allow God to take control of my tongue, it can do so much harm and cause a plethora of issues among the people around me. When I am allowing God to tame my tongue, I may still disagree with what someone says or does, but the way I say it and treat that person changes considerably. Only God can tame the tongue, and we must submit control of it to Him. Paul reminds us about how we should talk to one another in Ephesians.

Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.

Ephesians 4:29

My challenge to you and me starting today is to allow God to control your tongue. Watch what you say and how you say it. When we make the effort to do this, the way we treat people will change, and they will notice.

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