Proverbs 21:23 – “Whoever guards his mouth and tongue keeps his soul from troubles.” NKJV
I often have people quote this to me and demand that it means only the spiritual man but I would challenge you to examine the word translated ‘soul’ in the Hebrew. It is nephesh and literally means a breathing creature and would include (any appetite, body, desire, etc.). If you follow that it means if we ‘guard’ keep our ‘elephant mouths’ from overloading our lives we will avoid unnecessary troubles and problems that result.
How many issues can you think of in your life were the result of a ‘rash’ or ‘harsh’ word spoken? Probably many! The Bible teaches us to guard our hearts because everything flows from it. No wonder the Bible says that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. Is it not sensible that we should ask the Holy Spirit to help us ‘bridle’ our tongues? The tongue is a small member but capable of causing more trouble than you can easily get out of.
Yet if we take that to the spiritual we also realize that if we are hasty with our words making vows and promises to God that we cannot or do not keep it brings trouble to our lives. I would suggest that it is possible to talk oneself into such negativity by allowing unbridled and unfiltered words to flow that we plunge into depression, doubt, fear, and faithlessness. Words are important and they are powerful. Not just the words we hear but the ones we speak. Words have meaning and if God did not consider them important He would not have placed so many references in the Bible about the tongue and what we speak.
We have all witnessed the disruption through words and sadly words cannot be retrieved once uttered. They can be repented of and attempted retraction but once released they are forever there and can be incredible weapons of the enemy against our souls or lives. While I understand that we will never be successful in preventing all such words from coming forth we can continually seek the assistance of the Holy Spirit in ‘guarding our mouths and tongues’ that we speak words of life not death. You may be one that takes pride in ‘telling it like it is’ but I would pray that you will learn to ‘season your words’ with an understanding that just being brutal is not always the best approach. I dare say you do not like it when someone gives back in kind.
So as you go through your day let your words be yes and amen and allow the Holy Spirit to put a few seconds delay on your lips before you speak. God bless you richly and may He empower you to fulfill your dreams and desires! Blessings!