“The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous man runs into it and is safe.” Proverbs 18:10.
This scripture was from a recent devotional reading, and it caused me to think about how Awesome the name “God” is. He has many names, which you can check out in chapter 7 of “The Master’s Masterpiece” book; however, for this post, I want to focus on the thought from this scripture.
As I thought about God’s name being a strong tower and how I get to run into it and be safe, a peaceful feeling came over me. It felt like a warm blanket covering me on a cold night. I began to think about how God always takes care of me. I thought about all the times I have run to Him for safety and security when I’m having trials and tribulations in my life. It brought gratitude thinking how I can talk to Him 24/7 about anything on my heart. I thought about how every day, when I open His Word and let His wisdom sink into my soul, He is reaching out to me and letting me know His righteous right hand is holding me – “…fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10
Can you feel the safety and security of God? His name is a strong tower and the righteous can run into it and be safe!
And, then I began to think about how I hear people speak of how Amazing our God is; yet, out of the same mouth they take His name in vain or speak in a way that is opposite of what our Amazing God wants to hear. I cringe when I hear someone take His name in vain – the name of the Holy One who breathed life into us. The One who gives us mercy and grace. The One who gave His only Son for us. Why would someone want to take His name in vain?
In the book of James, the brother of Jesus shares with us about taming the tongue. Verses 1 and 2 are very sobering thoughts. They cause me to want to be so very careful in how I speak, and yet, many times I've allowed my tongue to get into action before the brain!
I know I’ve said things that have hurt others and wish I could take those words back. Every day I ask God for wisdom in all I say and do. What about you? Have you ever been guilty of praising God one minute and then speaking unkindly about someone or using God's name in vain?
Read what James says in James 3:1-12:
“Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. 2 For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body. 3 If we put bits into the mouths of horses so they obey us, we guide their whole bodies as well. 4 Look at the ships also: though they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs. 5 So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great things.
How great a forest is set ablaze by such a small fire! 6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life,[a] and set on fire by hell.[b] 7 For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by mankind, 8 but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. 9 With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God. 10 From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers,[c] these things ought not to be so.11 Does a spring pour forth from the same opening both fresh and salt water?12 Can a fig tree, my brothers, bear olives, or a grapevine produce figs? Neither can a salt pond yield fresh water.”
James tells us that, yes, blessing and cursing can come from the same mouth. He also says it ought not to be. When we allow both to come from the same mouth, are we being the kind of people God wants us to be? Are we being a godly example to others?
Even though the scripture from James 3 talks about the words that come out of our mouth, what about the words you say to yourself? God tells us in Matthew 22:39 to love our neighbors as ourselves. Would you agree that when we struggle with loving ourselves, it’s harder to have blessings come from our mouth? And, when we struggle with loving ourselves, are we more critical of our masterpiece, therefore being critical of the One who created us, which comes across as cursing God?
As you ponder these thoughts and focus on the words from James 3, I pray we will ask God to give us a mouth which only speaks blessings to others and ourself.
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