January 10

Written by Bill Grandi on January 10th, 2024

The power of the tongue seems to be a common theme in Proverbs. Probably the most forthright and pointed reference to the tongue in the New Testament is found in James 3. Just a few picked and chosen from 3:1-12. “But a tiny spark can set a great forest on fire. And among all the parts of the body, the tongue is a flame of fire…it is set on fire by hell itself.  People can tame all kinds of animals, birds, reptiles, and fish, but no one can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison…” If you have access to a Bible, I’d like to encourage you to read James 3:1-12 in its entirety.

Proverbs 10 is full of verses dealing with the tongue. Please get your Bible and read verses 6, 8, 11, 13, 14, 19, 20, 21, 31, and 32. I highlighted verse 19 this morning: “Too much talk leads to sin. Be sensible and keep your mouth shut.” (NLT)

This hits home. I’m a talker. I’m very social (they call us “extroverts”). And I am. Jo just shakes her head sometimes when I strike up a conversation with a clerk or a total stranger in the store. I love children, especially those as gregarious as me, and Jo has to remind me to be careful who I talk to. Some parents are leery of adults who talk to their children. At the ball fields this past summer, kids I read to in school would come to me and say, “Mr. Bill!” and then want to give me a hug.  (I did group hugs when I was done reading). Some parents stared at me and I had to introduce and explain who I was and how I knew their child. And yes, sometimes I talk too much. Someone said about me that “He assumes a familiarity that is not there.” Guilty as charged.

And sometimes, more so in the past when I was younger and less cautious and disciplined, I said too much. It got me in trouble. You know the old adage, “Open mouth insert foot?” That was written about me. I’ve swallowed a lot of socks in my day. I didn’t always heed Proverbs 10:19 nor did I listen and learn very well from James 3.

Those words on the pages of the Bible are there for a reason. Learn from them. Take it from a recovering talker. Be wise. Keep your mouth shut. You can’t ever regret something you don’t say.


10 Comments so far ↓

  1. Loved this, Bill! Lots of great truths in this post! And I love your honesty! 😉

  2. It is so true, Bill, that we will not regret what we didn’t say if it was hurtful or unkind. However, there are times when we must speak the truth to someone, hopefully with love. That’s the only way to do it, isn’t it?
    Loved this post!

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Yes, for sure Martha. We need to discern when it is wise to speak and wise not to. but when we do, it must be with love.

  3. gail says:

    Complete truth Bill. No matter how much we study and read the Bible, go to church, participate in Bible studies, read theology books, our tongue is still a trouble maker, and we have to constantly learn to tame it. Once the hurtful words leave our mouths, the damage that can be caused can last a few minutes to a lifetime. Even when we eat those words, and apologize they can never be taken back, words are irreversible and once outside in the world they have a life of their own.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Back at you Gail on the complete truth remark. Your words ring true as we often watch our lives go haywire from the wrong use of our tongue.

  4. Ed says:

    Lord does this take me back! I usually am not that big of a talker. Only yes and no. Usually. I used to be such a mouth that I would end up spitting lie after lie. Thank God someone roped me by the neck!

  5. Cheryl says:

    So true! Mom always told me that the least said is the easiest mended. I never forgot that and I think it has kept me in line more than once.