07/10/16 Guard My Mouth

READING: Psalms 140-145

One of the easiest ways to fall into the snare of the devil is to let our tongue get the best of us. It’s so easy to speak without thinking, to condemn without grace, to respond without prayer. Despite God’s gracious forgiveness, many of us live with regrets over words we once spoke, but desperately wish we could take back now. Sometimes we also recognize the power of words because we’ve been the recipient of painful words we’ve been unable to forget. The tongue really is a raging fire that we cannot control on our own (James 3:6). 

That’s especially the case when we face ungodly people. The psalmist realized that truth, too, so he prayed this simple but profound prayer: “Set a guard over my mouth, Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips” (Psalm 141:3). He knew that his words revealed his heart, of course; thus, his prayer was as much about his inner being as it was his external words. He did not want his heart to be “drawn to what is evil,” nor did he want to “take part in wicked deeds” (Psalm 141:4). In words, thoughts, and deeds, the psalmist wanted to please God. 

We control our tongue, though, only because of the One who is our strong deliverer, our rock, our fortress, our stronghold, and our shield (Psalm 140:7, 144:1-2). He changes us on the inside, and that change alters even the way we speak. It’s no wonder, then, the psalmist wrote about speaking of God’s goodness:

  • “Surely the righteous will praise your name” (Psalm 140:13)
  • “I will sing a new song to you, my God” (Psalm 144:9)
  • “My mouth will speak in praise of the Lord” (Psalm 145:21).

A right heart sends forth right words. That's the way it's supposed to be.  

ACTION STEPS: 

  • Evaluate your speech. Determine if you sometimes need to control your tongue better.    
  • Focus on praising His name throughout the day.              

PRAYER: “God, do guard my lips today. Give me a song that just erupts from me this Lord’s day.”      

TOMORROW’S READING:  Psalms 146-150