Criticizing

My words count. What kinds of words do you remember the significant adults in your life using toward you? Were they positive, encouraging words that built you up and made you feel valuable and worthwhile? Or did you hear more terms like “loser,” “worthless,” “stupid”?

The memories either bring smiles or cause pain. Your words have the same effect on those around you, especially on your children. Take a mental inventory of your speech. Do your words build up or tear down? With God’s help, commit to being the kind of person whose words encourage and edify others.

The bible tells me what words should and should not come out of my mouth:

29 Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.  

The words I speak need to be:  

 1.  “…Good and helpful”   The words of a Christ follower are to be helpful, constructive, encouraging, instructive, and uplifting. Sometimes, our words must be corrective; but that, too, can be helpful when done in the right spirit.  We need to “speak the truth but only speak it in love.” Ephesians 4:15.  Raw truth is seldom appropriate and is often destructive.

 2. “…An encouragement to those who hear them.”  Obviously, we should avoid saying things that intend to harm, discourage, or disappoint someone else. Everyone admires the person that says something that is encouraging. Proverbs 25:11 says: “Like apples of gold in settings of silver is a word spoken in right circumstances.

 Why do we speak words that harm and destroy?

 The mouth and heart are connected. “Out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks” (Matt. 12:34).  You can expect a change in speech when you become a Christ-follower.

 It is interesting to trace the word mouth through the Book of Romans and see how Christ makes a difference in a person’s speech. The unbelievers’ mouth is “full of cursing and bitterness” (Rom. 3:14); but when he trusts Christ, he gladly confesses with his mouth “Jesus Christ is Lord” (Rom. 10:9-10,). As an unbeliever his mouth is stopped before the throne of God (Rom. 3:19); but as a believer, his mouth is opened to praise God (Rom. 15:6).

 Change the heart and you change the speech.

 I want to fill my heart with the love of Christ so that only truth, goodness and encouragement can come out of my mouth. How about you?

 Darrell

 For more on the My Big Mouth series, go to www.ridgefellowship.com

 Sources:
Bible Exposition Commentary- New Testament
New International Version
New Living Translation
MacArthur New Testament Commentary

 

About dkoop

Lead Pastor of Upwards Church: Leander, Jarrell & Taylor, TX
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