How do you know when it’s time to keep your mouth shut and when it’s time to speak your mind? We walk such a fine line of wanting to say what we truly want to say while still adhering to scripture and what God would want at the same time. There are five situations in which I find myself wanting to say what’s on my mind but knowing it’s best to bite my tongue!
When you are angry:
Being angry is the #1 reason that hurtful words are oftentimes said. The emotional buildup that comes from anger can lead to saying things you don’t even mean.
James 1:19-20 says, “My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry.”
Slow to speak and slow to become angry. These are the two parts of the verse that we really need to pay attention to. We grew up with the phrase: “think before you speak,” and I think that’s still applicable to life today! Don’t let anger be a gateway to regret!
When you’re tempted to gossip:
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.”
Gossip is one of the easiest sins to fall into. Sometimes we don’t even realize we’re doing it! If you find yourself in a situation where you’re tempted to gossip, either remove yourself or think of a new topic to talk about. Let your conversations be full of encouragement and positivity!
When it’s time to listen:
Sometimes all a friend needs is for someone to listen to them instead of overbearing them with advice or trying to tell them what they’re doing is wrong. When was the last time someone sat and simply listened to you? We all need these moments, and it’s important to recognize when the people close to us need them, as well.
If your words will be hurtful:
Proverbs 15:1 says, “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”
If you know what you’re about to say may be hurtful, then stop and think: is this benefiting anyone? Sometimes it’s necessary to be honest and straightforward, but there can be a fine line between hurtful and truthful.
If your words don’t reflect the Lord:
As followers of Christ, people watch what we say and do whether we know they are or not. Our words and actions should reflect who Jesus is as our Lord and Savior.
Psalm 19:14 says, “May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.”
If you’re wondering if you should bite your tongue, think if Jesus would approve of what you’re about to say. Although we’ll never be perfect, we can take steps to ensure that our words are pleasing to the Lord!
Start today by creating positivity and encouragement around you by what you say. Use your words to lift people up instead of tear them down. It starts with one person to make a difference in the conversations you’re having daily! Stop tearing people down and start lifting people up, even if that means staying silent! 🙂