I tend to think about what people always say to others and how all that is said impacts others.
My Bible says a lot about words, the tongue and the mouth.
Sitting here and thinking about a versus that I read in Ephesians 4:29 which says:
“Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear”
This verse has stopped me from saying a lot today. I had to evaluate whatever I was about to say or tweet.
Was it called for? Was it going to edify the needs of the moment? Was there a solution to come out of it?
I was angry (which I think is the reason i’m writing this) but there is a calmness in me that is stopping me from rising my nuclear words and I think it the Spirit of the Lord saying no and focusing me on this verse.
This versus provides three characteristics of wholesome speech:
Wholesome words build people up. This is the meaning of the word “edification.” It’s the same word from which we get “edifice” or building. Other people, the Bible tells us, are temples (see 1 Corinthians 3:16 and 6:19). As Christ followers, we have the privilege of co-laboring with God to build these living cathedrals. So if i went off with my nuclear words i was going to educate anyone because I was under the influence of angry.
Wholesome words are timely. The right words at the wrong time can be just as damaging as the wrong words. Words left unsaid can also be hurtful. Being Christ followers, it takes discernment to know when and if to speak. The right word spoken at the right time can make all the difference for someone. With the Spirit of the Lord I was controlled not to say wrong words at the right time because a bigger damage would have been done.
Wholesome words provide grace. I take this as more than merely being generous or accommodating—though those are both important. I see grace as also the power of God to do His will (see Philippians 2:13). For us Christ Followers, our words can either empower people and make them want to press on or diminish them and make them want to quit. Our tongue can create and can curse, if i had let my angry take control i would have cursed and not encouraged any one.
King Solomon said, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue” (Proverbs 18:21). Every day, we are shaping reality for someone by the words that we use with them. The choice is ours. How will our words impact others?