By Pastor Kristin Wenck
Once upon a time, in the city of Gaithersburg, MD, there was a junior high school girl who loved to talk on the phone. It was the habit of teenagers to talk for hours after school on the phone, only to be dragged away for meals with the family. Friends were often dialed multiple times in an evening. This was, of course, before cell phones, call waiting, and caller ID (you can thank us for these services now). If someone was talking on the phone, another caller would get the “busy” signal. This was very frustrating for parents, who wanted to receive their calls, and siblings, who also wanted to talk to their friends. But parents were busy, and since you could have a phone in your room, they often weren’t aware that the phone was in use to say something, until they learned that someone could not get through later.
Enter the Holy Spirit to take care of the matter and the strife it was causing. With these 2 verses, and some others about gossip and meddling, He changed my habits of phone use and words forever.
Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit. NKJV
Words kill, words give life; they’re either poison or fruit—you choose. MSG
What we speak is what we have. We are bringing death or life into our situations by what we say about them. One way that we can recognize what we are speaking is to insert the phrase “and that’s exactly the way I want it” (courtesy of Terri Savelle Foy) after each statement we make. A way that we have made ourselves aware as a family is to simply respond “If you say so”. Try it this week. I can guarantee the results are eye opening, to say the least.
The first step to changing a situation in faith is to become aware of what you are speaking about it. Then purposefully change what you are speaking to line up with the Word of God.
In the multitude of words sin is not lacking, but he who restrains his lips is wise. NKJV
The more you talk, the more likely you will cross the line and say the wrong thing; but if you are wise, you’ll speak less and with restraint. VOICE
Another step is to practice silence. Often when we hear something or when things happen, our first response is emotional, and we want to respond immediately with words. We can unleash a mess very quickly and get others involved as well. Choose to be silent and practice restraint.
Consider what the Word says about this situation before you say anything. Then, on purpose, release life and not death into a situation. The more you talk something, the bigger it becomes. Speak God’s Word and magnify it. Let it be the final authority and the last Word on the subject!