What we say and how we say it matters.

In James chapter 3, we are reminded about the power of our words. Our words and speech can build or bruise. We can strengthen others or destroy them by what we say and how we say it. It is important to regularly do some self-evaluation on the health of our speech. Here are a few principles to help us all as we evaluate our speech and words.

  • Be someone who builds and doesn’t bruise others with words.
    Proverbs 11:9 – With their mouth the godless destroy their neighbors, but through knowledge the righteous escape.
  • Be understanding and self-controlled.
    Proverbs 11:12 – Whoever derides their neighbor has no sense, but the one who has understanding holds their tongue.
  • Be kind and compassionate.
    Proverbs 11:17 – Those who are kind benefit themselves, but the cruel bring ruin on themselves.
  • Be quick to turn down the volume and avoid angry talk.
    Proverbs 15:1 – A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
  • Be seeking to strengthen and encourage others with your speech.
    Proverbs 15:4 – The soothing tongue is a tree of life, but a perverse tongue crushes the spirit.
  • Be gracious and considerate of others in how you talk.
    Proverbs 16:24 – Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.
  • Be wise with your words.
    Proverbs 18:4 – The words of the mouth are deep waters, but the fountain of wisdom is a rushing stream.
  • Be pursuing godly speech always.
    Proverbs 20:15 – Gold there is, and rubies in abundance, but lips that speak knowledge are a rare jewel.
  • Be careful in how you speak – careless talk is deadly.
    Proverbs 25:18 – Like a club or a sword or a sharp arrow is one who gives false testimony against a neighbor.

Grade yourself on the principles above. How are you doing?