How hard it is to control our tongues. We have all probably been victims and victimizers in the use of our tongues. In fact, the Bible describes the difficulty of controlling what we say in James 3:2. We all stumble in many ways. If anyone is never at fault in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to keep his whole body in check. In a world where we have made an art form out of being negative about all sorts of issues over electronic media, on the printed page, or talking around town, it is refreshing to hear people who give others the benefit of the doubt, who encourage others, and turn the tide of negativity in our world. The Bible is clear when it comes to how we should respond to a world that desperately needs to see the witness of people that have a tongue that is more encouraging. In Philippians it says 2:14-16: "Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe."
It is clear that one of the best witnesses a believer can have is to not complain or argue like the rest of the world. In fact, we are to do just the opposite and look for opportunities to encourage. As Ephesians 4:29 says, "Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen."
How do we do this when there is not much encouraging talk around us? By changing what we think about. In Matthew 12:30 Jesus says: "For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of,"
meaning that you will respond in like way to what your heart or mind is dwelling on. If you listen, read, or think about things that are cynical, mean, and not encouraging, then out of your mouth will come things that are cynical, mean, and not encouraging. So you might think, "what is there to think about that is not negative?"
The Bible in Colossians 3:1-2 says: "think about the things above; Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things."
If we spend time thinking about what Christ has done for us by taking our sin on the cross; knowing that we did nothing to earn or deserve such a great sacrifice, then we feel better than we deserve!
When we think about all that we don't have or all the earthly things we want, we feel cheated in life and we get bitter and selfish. If we realize
that God loves us so much to allow the sacrifice of His one and only son for us, then we can walk around knowing how loved we are, serving and loving others, because God through Christ loves and served us on the cross.
It only makes sense that what we think about will make us respond to others according to our state of mind at the time. So if the world has you down, look up to God, read the Bible again and bring a little bit of the joy of Christ down to earth; we all could use a lot more encouraging words, words that may have the power to change someone's whole day or, who knows, maybe their whole life. So encourage those you live, work, and communicate with. I dare you to see how much change for good it will make.