Will Noris, the journalist wrote, “If your lips would keep from slips, five things observe with care; to whom you speak, of whom you speak, and how… and when… and where.”
Publius, the Greek sage wrote, “I have often regretted my speech, but never my silence.”
I was invited to do a live television interview earlier this week. I was very aware that there was no taking back my words once I’d said them. There was no room for me to convey a message that I could later retract. I would never have that luxury.
It serves as a daily lesson that our speech is ‘live’ at all times.
There’s no taking back what you have just said in a heated moment.
If you know that you need to go to a new level in your speech, here are 3 suggestions to help you…
1) Think first. Before you speak, pause for ten seconds and mentally preview your words. Are they accurate or exaggerated? Kind or cutting? Needless or necessary? Grateful or complaining? Remember, what you don’t say, you’ll never have to explain.
2) Talk less. Ecclesiastes 5:3, “Many words mark the speech of a fool.”
Which basically means… put a sock in it.
You increase your chances of blowing it when you talk too much. Compulsive talkers find it hard to keep friends. Conserve your verbal energy.
3) Start today. You’ve now read enough to help you get started. Once you condition your mouth to the new ‘muzzle’, it will become easier each day to resist the urge to speak out of turn.
James 3:2-6, 9-12 ‘We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check. When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.’
A daily devotion for a better way of living.