"The wise are glad to be instructed, but babbling fools fall flat on their faces." (Proverbs 10:8)
Words have the power to make things better or worse. Choose them carefully. Thankfully, God has provided clear direction on how we can be successful in our communication with others.
There is actually a three-step process for filtering His Word through our words. We can guard our mouths if we guard our hearts, and we do that by guarding His teachings.
We can be wise with our words when we have more of His Word in our hearts. This helps ensure the words we speak are wise and honoring as opposed to impulsive and reactionary.
The three step process is:
Step 1: Guard His teachings by regularly reading His Word.
"Keep my commands and you will live; guard my teachings as the apple of your eye." (Proverbs 7:2)
Step 2: Guard your heart by storing His Word in your heart so you can readily refer back to God’s principles and promises.
"Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it." (Proverbs 4:23)
Step 3: Guard your mouth by asking Holy Spirit to allow words that are honoring, right and true be spoken and to stop speaking words which are harmful, wrong and untrue.
"Set a guard over my mouth, Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips." (Psalm 141:3)
A consistent reading of the Bible (Step 1) fills our hearts with God’s instructions, principles & promises (Step 2) and improves the likelihood we will guard our mouths (Step 3) against saying things we will later regret. Filling our minds and hearts with God’s truth, as opposed to the world’s truth, helps us to be in His will.
When we do say something we wish we had not, we can work backwards from step #3 to #2 to #1. We must ask ourselves, “What prompted me to say that?” There are many reasons why we say things we should not. These include things like fear, pride, stress, fatigue, hurt, ignorance, anxiety, impatience, anger, or lack of knowledge. We are not perfect, so we will say things we wish we hadn't. It is essential to determine why it happened and avoid doing so the next time. We can do this by keeping a verse in our hearts which we can readily bring to our mind and heart to put a guard over our mouth.
You may have spoken something because you were anxious. Therefore, see what God says in His Word about anxiety so Holy Spirit can bring that verse to your mind and heart the next time you are in a similar situation. One verse to take to work and guard in your heart could be:
"Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you." (1 Peter 5:7)
You might have said something because you were angry. Look up what God says in His Word about anger to prepare yourself for the next time you are in this kind of situation. One verse to take to work and guard in your heart could be:
"My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires." (James 1: 19-20)
Can you recall a situation this past week when you wish you had said something differently? Now, think back to what you think caused it, then head to God’s Word to see what He says about it. You will find a promise or a principle to help you the next time.
Taking This to God in Prayer
Dear Heavenly Father, Thank You for Your Word which I can read and store in my heart. You have given principles and direction for all circumstances that can and will arise at work. Help me to continually and consistently read Your Word as I search for Your truths so I can honor You and bless others in what I say and do. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Have a wonderful week at work as you continue to fill your heart with His Word and be wise with your words.
Bonny, Christian Women at Work