Proverbs 21:23 Whoso keepeth his mouth and his tongue Keepeth his soul from troubles.
I think we all know this proverb to be true and we have seen it in action. I know that because I talk all the time I get myself in trouble. I deserve the trouble, by the way!
I often have good intentions. I am saying things to try and help another but use an illustration or example that involves a known person. I might even use the name of the person thinking that I have their permission but I do not.
I think that for a missionary or a preacher this verse is very important. I must learn to take control of my mouth. I must learn to think before I speak. I must learn not to say things that can hurt others.
I have been reprimanded in the past for this. I deserved it. I said harsh things. I said them, I think, with good reason and the best intentions but I was wrong.
It hurts to be reprimanded. It hurts to be called out but it is necessary. I need to realize that I hurt people. It isn’t my intention. I love them. I want to do the best but then the way I speak, the words I say or the attitude I show hurts someone.
Because we work so intimately with people we must be even more careful than most. We are talking to them. We think that they will learn the lesson and what is said will go no further but that is not true. We need to speak like we were speaking in front of the world and especially that person.
They will hear. It will hurt. It will be my fault because I didn’t control my mouth.