Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
It’s been proposed that the average person spends as much as one-fifth of his or her life talking. The statistics say that a single day’s words would fill somewhere close to a 50-page book. In a year’s time the average person’s words would fill 132 books of 200 pages each! Wow! The question is what books are we writing? Scripture tells us that the power of life and death are in the tongue, and one of the hardest things to do is to tame the tongue. James said the tongue is set on fire by hell itself. Scary thought isn’t it?! Jesus Himself said that from the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks. As the old saying goes, “what’s in the well comes up in the bucket.” It is a sad commentary when someone who claims to be filled with the Spirit of God and the love of Jesus speaks with disrespect and disdain to others. Paul tells us here to not let any corrupting or unwholesome words come from our mouths, but to speak only that which will build others in faith. Our words should be edifying, encouraging, exhorting, and empowering not destructive, damaging, divisive, or disrespectful. So, what’s in your bucket? What books are you writing? Ask the Lord today to cleanse your mind and heart so that your thoughts toward others will be positive. Then speak positive words that will build and not tear down. At the end of our lives our loved ones will only have our words and actions to look back upon. What will they remember? May we write only books of grace with our words.