Good evening girls! I hope you are well today and have had a relaxing day. I apologize for being quite absent from the blog recently but life has been pretty busy. I have finished a huge task I had to do and now I'm a bit more free to get back to sharing God's Word with you. I have missed 'talking' to you all, so it's good to be back!
Our memory verse for this week is one that I'm sure we all struggle with at one time or another - keeping control of our mouth and tongue (more about the teaching on this further down).
I was talking to some lovely ladies yesterday about our Bible reading and one was saying that she had only had time to read her Bible but not colour/mark it. I told her that reading God's Word is always the most important thing and should come first and she was doing exactly the right thing. Not everybody has time to mark/colour their Bible, some don't want to and others (like me) love to mark it because it helps them to remember it better. Never, ever feel guilty that you are somehow letting the Lord down or not being good enough because you ONLY read your Bible. If only everyone read their Bible, like you, the world would be a better place! Keep up the good work!
I've noticed that on many occasions in the book of Proverbs there are lots of references to:
And now for verse 23! Easier said than done, don't you think? To "keep" our mouth and tongue means to 'keep control' of them, put a guard on them, be aware of the danger they can cause and use them with discretion and wisdom. What would you think of someone who had an angry and vicious dog and who let this dog run about in the park, without a lead or a muzzle? You'd likely be cross or afraid and would keep well away from them and their dog. How would you feel if it came to your attention that people avoided you because they were afraid of the things you say? They knew that they would either hear gossip from you about someone else or even worse that they would be the target of your criticism. We have to be SO VERY CAREFUL about what comes out of our mouth. THINK BEFORE YOU SPEAK!!!
- the tongue, mouth, lips
- the heart
Very often you will see that these three things are interrelated because the anger that develops in a person's heart comes out in the words they say. That is why it is so important to be careful about our heart and our attitude. What is in the heart comes out through the mouth so if our heart is right then our words should be right too. If you struggle with your tongue and your words, instead of asking the Lord to help you deal with what you say, ask Him to deal with the very root of the problem, the heart itself.
I found verse 1 very comforting in the fact that, even though God has given man free will and the ability to make choices, He will step in and take over when He feels that a man has gone too far. This verse also helps encourage us in the place of prayer because, even when someone has plans and thoughts of their own for their life, God can indeed step in and change a man's course or direction in answer to prayer.
Verse 4 reminds us that not only are things like murder, theft, adultery and anger all sin, but so is "a proud heart", something that we can't necessarily see in a person (except by their actions). Pride is a dreadful sin and it leads to all sorts of problems for both the proud person and those around them. Pride makes people think they are more important than they really are and it in turn makes others feel insignificant.
Aren't the words of verse 21 lovely? When we follow after the good things that God wants us to follow we are blessed with even more in the end. Here we read of someone following after "righteousness and mercy" and in the end he finds "life, righteousness and honour". God blesses us so much, with so many good things and undeserved things. He is a great and wonderful God!
Of course, it is very unfortunate but maybe you have been the victim of someone's tongue (and who hasn't?) but at least if you do the right thing and keep control of yours, you will be able to save yourself from a lot of self-inflicted trouble.
- What is important to you and what sorts of things do you seek for in life?
- Would God be happy with your choices? If not, what changes could you make?
- Do you struggle with controlling your tongue? If yes, what can you do about it? Do you need to apologize to someone for hurting them with your tongue? Remember, wounds from the tongue can hurt for a long, long time and a simple, but sincere, apology can ease the hurt.
- Have you been on the wrong end of someone's nasty tongue? Are you finding it hard to forget what they've said and keep going over and over the words in your mind? Ask the Lord to help you forget about what was said because it will eat away at you and rob you of your joy in the Lord. Don't let the devil get the victory over you.
Hugs, Karen x