Paul says we Christians are running a race. Here's what I'm looking at on my run toward Christ.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Watch Your Mouth

Have you ever been around a little kid and listened to them?  "Kids Say the Darndest Things" was a successful show for Art Linkletter and later Bill Cosby because kids lack a filter on their mouths.

One time our little neighbor boy Mitchell asked my mom, "Why did you and Larry put a barn in your backyard?"  My mom and step-dad had just gotten a backyard shed that was bigger than the other sheds in the neighborhood.  Immediately my mom no longer wondered what little Mitchell's parents thought about our new shed.  Mitchell heard what his parents were saying and repeated it at our house.  Often out of the overflow of your mouth comes your kids words.

I have a filter on my mouth, most of the time; I'm not exactly like little Mitchell.  However, if I say something you have a pretty good idea what's going on inside me.  Jesus explained it like this:

"No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit.  Each tree is recognized by its own fruit.  People do not pick figs from thornbushes, or grapes from briers.  The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart.  For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks."  Luke 6:43-45

Just as we can often tell what's going on in a home by the speech of a child, we can tell what's going inside of the heart of another by their speech.  "For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks."

So, don't just have a filter on what comes out of your mouth, have a filter on what goes into your heart.  Judging one another by what we say in our worst moments perhaps isn't fair but it may be accurate.  I'm not encouraging you to begin judging people based on their speech, however you should do that if you're considering voting for them.  No, I don't want you to read this and to start analyzing others.  I want you to watch your own mouth.  Listen to what is coming out of it.  Is the overflow of your heart kind words or gossip, curses or blessings, lies or truth?

When I stub my toe I might shout "*&%#!"  Do you know why?  Because I stored that word in my heart and in fact I've thought on it so much that it came out naturally when the occasion arose.  Some may retort that saying swear words is not a sin, and that may be true (I'm not completely convinced of that but it may be).  But the question must be, why do I value that word in such a way that when my mouth filter malfunctions that word is the first word to overflow out of my heart?

What must we do?  Well, the simple garbage in garbage out philosophy helps.  We need to stop filling our hearts with garbage because it flows out of us.  We also must ask Jesus to continue to sanctify us.  He has promised to give us a new heart that overflows only with goodness.  When we see the fruit that is our words and don't like that fruit we need to pray that God continue to renew and sanctify us.  My words often remind me that my sanctification is far from over and at that moment I need to ask for forgiveness and beg for transformation; but I must also rejoice that though my sanctification is slow my justification is already done and the moment I die my glorification will be instant.  Despite my shortcomings and your shortcomings God is good and faithful to keep His promises.

"... out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks."

Watch what comes out of your mouth and what goes into your heart today.

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