by Charles R. Swindoll
See how great a forest is set aflame by such a small fire! And the tongue is a fire, the very world of iniquity; the tongue is set among our members as that which defiles the entire body, and sets on fire the course of our life, and is set on fire by hell.
Our Father, our tongues are far too often wicked and out of control! We have breached confidences that were meant to be held in trust. We have told several people of the offense we received but have failed to speak with the offender to make things right. And we have spoken jealous and envious words of one who was promoted over us. Many lack the courage to tell us to our face of our error, but You don't; You command us to get control of our tongues. We're rebuked by Your indictment: from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing . . . these things ought not to be this way.
Lord, help us to remember that there's no decision more important than salvation. And on the heels of that, there's no decision more important than the decision to restore a relationship that has been fractured because of hurtful words. Forgive us for speaking before we knew the facts or before we earned the right to say what we've said. Forgive us for hurting a brother or a sister who wasn't even there to defend himself or herself. Hear our prayer today and vindicate us, Lord, for we, too, have been verbally assassinated and our integrity has been violated. And we ask You to fight our battles for us. We come to You today in faith in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. And with our tongues we say, amen.
Reprinted by permission. Day by Day, Charles Swindoll, July 2005, Thomas Nelson, inc., Nashville, Tennessee. All rights reserved. Purchase "Day by Day" here.