Every time you speak
Every time Archie Bunker opened his mouth, it sounded like a blare of an ambulance siren.
This famous TV character from the 1970’s was known for spilling out glaring and blaring insults to his family and others and leaving “verbal train tracks” on those near him.
Although the show was often funny, it would rarely be funny to any of us if we had to deal with such a family member as Archie Bunker. The sad thing is that some of us do. We know people who spill out unkind insults on a regular basis, and it is a very unpleasant experience.
This makes me think of the words of Jesus in Matthew 15:18 - when He said that our words come from our heart. He offended the Pharisees when He said, “Not what goes into the mouth defiles a man, but what comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man” (v. 11-12).
They thought that they were right with God because they followed strict rules and ritual cleansing of their hands before eating and eating only certain clean foods.
But Jesus turned their self-deception upside down! Jesus upset their pride! And still today Jesus upsets our pride! We may think that we are godly people because we go to church regularly and pray, but then we gossip or talk about people behind their backs.
James 3:9-10 says, “With our tongue we bless our God and Father and with it we curse men ... Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing ... these things ought not to be so.”
If a siren blares from our mouth when we open it, we need to examine our heart and ask the Lord to forgive us and to help us be a blessing to others.
We can pray, “Father, please cleanse me and purify my heart so that I speak words that reflect Your grace and love. Help me to control my tongue so I will not bring on You disgrace!”
Remember this — every time you speak, your mind and heart is on parade!