I will never forget the night. It was a spring night, nice outside, but cold as ice inside the conference room where the meeting was held. There I sat with a group of men in a meeting that for sure was going to be remembered by my feeble mind forever. Words flew like swords at me. I sat. I was speechless. Every time someone else took a turn I began to fidget, knowing the possibility of the things coming from his mouth would deteriorate my spirit even more. Lots of things were said that night, but the one line I will never forget was, “Autumn, if you do this, God will never use you.” That phrase lingers in my mind some 10 years after the incident. I sit today confident that that man was utterly and completely mistaken. He has no idea that regularly that phrase has entered my mind. He chose to speak for the Almighty God, and God can speak for Himself. I left the meeting shredded in my spirit by men, but strengthened by my God Who had led me to that very meeting.
WORDS…………..The weight we carry we do not comprehend. They have the power to change life, encourage, strengthen, but they also have the same power to steal joy, kill spirits, and destroy the innocent. They can single handedly give you favor even honor, and the next breath take it all away. If you have read the Proverbs at all you will know it is saturated with scripture referring to the mouth. Proverbs 6:2 says it like this, “You are snared by the words of your mouth; you are taken by the words of your mouth.” Or maybe we resonate better with Proverbs 8:8 which says, “All the words of my mouth are with righteousness.” Or just maybe this one found in Proverbs 10:32, “The lips of the righteous know what is acceptable, but the mouth of the wicked what is perverse.” Proverbs 21:23 is also a great one that says simply this,” Whoever guards his mouth and tongue keeps his soul from troubles.” (I like to use this jewel when counseling teen girls!)
Thinking of that spring night in that meeting all these verses come to mind, could he not have simply refrained from speaking. I tell you this because we have some major diarrhea of the mouth going on. I cannot believe when people come seeking advice, most of their hurts are caused by what someone has said to them, or about them. In a culture where we have this “get over it” mentality, and sarcasm is the norm in almost every mouth, we have forgotten the damage that comes from being frivolous with one of the most valuable tools God has given us, our mouth. The old adage, “Think before you speak” is actually brilliant advice and scriptural. We as women need to get back to seeing others as God sees them.
I have saved my favorite proverb for last. Proverbs 18:21 says, “Life and death are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.”
I have mouth problems too, it used to be a HUGE problem of mine, and I loved to zing people with just the right phrase at the right time. But now that I know that being involved in the torment of someone else’s mind for possible years is not worth the zing.
Ladies that I love, GUARD YOUR MOUTHS!