Our words can do severe damage to our relationships, our careers, and the world around us. But here’s the good news: God can give us the wisdom we need to control our tongues and learn to speak life-giving words that reflect the love of Christ and what His Word says. Here are a few tips to help you tame your tongue and shape your life:
1. Use your words to bless.
Our words have the power to bless or curse. We need to pay close attention to the way we talk about ourselves. People who have not disciplined their mouths say some of the most awful things about themselves: “I can’t do anything right. Nothing ever works out for me. Nobody loves me…” Instead of speaking out of our feelings or circumstances, we need to say the same thing that God says about us in His Word.
2. Be thankful and say so.
Tell people you’re thankful for what they do for you—and thank God for everything. Take a few minutes every day and thank God for everything you can think of—your family, your health, food, hot water…
When I have my blessing session every morning, I take time to thank God for working in my life. One thing I’ve learned is when we’re waiting for a breakthrough, we need to thank Him for working on that situation behind the scenes.
3. Encourage, edify and build others up.
Encouraging people has not always come easy to me, but years ago I made a commitment to God to start doing it on purpose. Think about the people you already know you’re going to be around and ask God to put something in your heart that you can say to them that will build them up.
4. Tell the truth.
Holding on to the truth might mean losing a friend or your reputation. If you’re going to be committed to the truth, there will be times when you’ll have to make a sacrifice. Hang on to it no matter what it costs you. It is so rewarding.
5. Don’t talk too much.
A lot of times, we just need to be quiet. I think it’s interesting that we have two eyes, two ears, two nostrils—and only one mouth. We need to be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to get angry.