A disciplined tongue
For reading & meditation - Proverbs 10:18-32
"' he who holds his tongue is wise." (v.19)
I'm glad God included in the book of Proverbs the words that are before us today. It's important to talk, but talking too much is as bad as not talking at all. Proverbs extols rationing our words. Once, when Thomas Edison the inventor was at a reception, the toastmaster stood up and complimented him on his many inventions, especially the talking machine. After the toastmaster sat down, the aged inventor rose to his feet and said, "Thank you for those remarks, but I must correct one thing. It was God who invented the talking machine. I only invented the first one that can be shut off." A doctor told me that once, while writing out a prescription, he asked a woman to put out her tongue. When he had finished, she said to him, "But doctor, you never even looked at my tongue." The doctor replied, "It wasn't necessary, I just wanted you to keep quiet while I wrote the prescription." Amidst the humor of today's notes, don't miss the point - words are important but don't overdo them. I like the advice of an anonymous poet who wrote: If your lips would keep from slips Five things observe with care: Of whom you speak, to whom you speak, And how and when and where. A wise person has a disciplined tongue. Many need to learn this, for, like the tongue in old shoes, our tongue is often the last thing to be worn out. If a disciplined tongue is your need, ask God to help you, for an undisciplined tongue is an unloving tongue.
Father, I realize that oftentimes my tongue is the most difficult thing to bring under control. Yet I have the promise of Your help even in this. I give you my tongue to be bridled - take over the reins. In Jesus' Name I pray. Amen.
For Further Study
1. What did Jesus say we will have to account for?
2. What did Paul mean by "mere talkers" (Titus 1:10)?