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  • Henry Omotayo

What Are You Saying?

Proverbs 17:27-28

Message No. 0575 | Twitter @GodandUs |

I imagine that if the wealthy have their way, they would all move to space and live there alone, but on this planet, no one lives in isolation. It does not matter how introverted a person is, at some point, he or she needs to talk to people. Even monks have times when they talk. It is hard to have a relationship that is completely solitary. Yet, as important as talk is, it is one of the major problems that we have in relationships. People can either be happy or hurt by what they hear from others. Either in business or in our personal lives, no relationship can flourish if all that one party hears from another party are insults, lack of appreciation, criticism and words that cause pain in the heart.

At least in the western world where individual freedom is paramount, we hear of married couples who are separated or divorced, often owing to emotional stress or lack of appreciation of each other. It starts gradually, creating a virtual or emotional distance between the couple, until they feel safer sleeping in different beds to avoid discussions that would keep them awake at night. There are millions of homes where couples behave to each other as room mates rather than husbands and wives. Some remain in their marriages, not because they love each other anymore, but because of the children.

The question today is, what are you saying to your spouse that is causing such pain? What are you saying to your colleague at work that is causing discomfort? It is often said that people don’t quit their jobs, they quit their managers; so, what are you saying to your direct reports that is making people to leave your team or resign from your organization? As a pastor, what are you saying to your congregation that is making people to leave your church? What are you saying to your friends that is making them to desert you? Are you aware that you are causing pain to others? In proverbs 17:27, the Bible says:

The one who has knowledge uses words with restraint, and whoever has understanding is even-tempered.

Words matter, and words need to be used conservatively, or with restraint. Before a word is spoken, it is best to quickly weigh the word to understand its potential impact on the person or people to whom the word is directed. Not only are people sensitive to words, but the level of sensitivity also differs from person to person. An understanding of this sensitivity is what (according to the Bible verse) separates a man or woman of knowledge from someone who lacks knowledge.

Some of the things that make people to speak words they would ordinarily not speak are anger, frustration and fear, and while it is easier said than done, it is good practice to moderate our anger in ways that we do not say things that we later regret. In the Bible passage quoted above, the second part of the verse says that whoever has understanding is even-tempered. In Ephesians 4:26-27, the Bible says:

Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil

Notice that the Bible does not say that we should not be angry, but it says we should not sin as a result of the anger. The way to not sin is to moderate our reaction and what could potentially come out of our mouths when we are angry. Sometimes it is best to say nothing. If you need to step out of the environment briefly, then do it, to avoid saying or doing things that you would pray to take back later, but it wouldn’t be possible to do. The Bible says from the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks, so it’s sometimes difficult to convince people that you do not mean what you said. In verse 29 of Ephesians 4, the Bible says:

Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers

As God’s children and as examples to our families, to the church and to the people around us, we need to guard what we are saying so we do not set wrong examples for people and so we do not destroy our credibility or hinder people from accepting Jesus as their savior. Remember that while many people would not read the Bible, they will read you; they will look up to you as an example of what Jesus Christ expects the character of a Christian to be. The more we profess Christ, the more people expect our character to reflect Christ. May the Spirit of God help us to continuously work on our words until they always reflect what God wants them to be. Have a blessed week!

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 If you are yet to give your life to Christ, you do not have a covenant with God and His promises do not apply to you. To come under these promises, please surrender your life to Christ today, by praying this prayer:
 Lord I know that I am a sinner and I am unable to save myself. I am sorry for my sins and I pray that you please forgive me. I am aware that Your Son Jesus died for my sins and I accept Him as my Lord and savior. I surrender my life unto you from this moment. Please take control of my entire being and help me to be obedient to your Word, going forward. Thank you, Lord, for hearing me. I have prayed in Jesus’ name. Amen.
 If you prayed the foregoing prayer, you have just been born again. Please find a Bible believing church in your area and ask to see the pastor. Let him or her know that you have just given your life to Christ and s/he will guide you on next steps in your journey as a child of God. The Lord bless you!
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