Ever noticed how easy it is to give people a piece of your mind? If you’re not careful, your mouth can get you in situations your feet can’t easily escape. Earlier this week, I learned that a teacher in North Carolina may face serious punishment. She had a frustrating day with her students and decided to vent on Facebook. No doubt, she had encouraged and inspired the same students before, possibly earlier that day. Yet, those endearing experiences quickly faded in the shadow of her “explosion.”
Isn’t it amazing how much trouble our words can get us into? That’s James’ point when he wrote, “… but no one can tame the tongue. It is restless and evil, full of deadly poison” (James 3:8, New Living Translation). We use the same mouth to bless God and blast people. And, James is right: this is not right, especially if we’re striving to demonstrate unconditional love.
One way to be uncommon is by watching our words. Instead of “going off’ on others, we should pray for them or praise their good qualities. Remember, when we criticize others, we criticize God, who made them in His image. So watch your words, knowing “if we could control our tongues, we would be perfect and could also control ourselves in every other way” (James 3:2, New Living Translation).