As human beings we are created with quick and gifted minds. We can create and solve and figure out all sorts of imaginative inventions and complex designs and perplexing problems. We can learn to do many different tasks and hone specific skills. We can even learn to speak multiple languages. Our minds are amazing creations.
“No one can tame the tongue” states James. There are many, many instances each day where we can prove him right. Sometimes it is us that does so, sometimes we observe others doing so. The list of words uttered that I wish I had not said is quite a long list. We all have similar lists. But if one were to look at the list chronologically, hopefully one would see a pattern emerging. As one grows in the maturity of one’s faith, you would hope to see increasing gaps between the items on the list. A growing and developing faith should exhibit itself in how we speak to and treat one another.
James indeed does pose the question of how can we praise God with the same tongue we curse our fellow man. It is a good question. The simple and correct answer is that we cannot do this. But the reality is that we do struggle with controlling our tongue. Sometimes our amazing brains are too quick and out of our mouths comes something that should not.
At the point of hurting or harming another with our tongue, first we must offer a sincere and humble apology to all offended. Second, we must look within and go to work at taming the tongue better. Third, we too must be merciful and gracious when we are stung or hurt. We are all on the same journey to draw closer and closer to God, to become more and more like His Son, Jesus. Each day may we guard our tongues so that our light can shine brightest into the world all around us.
Scripture reference: James 3: 5b-12