READING: Proverbs 9-12
“When there are many words, sin is unavoidable, but the one who controls his lips is prudent.”
Maybe you know somebody who talks too much. In fact, I’m guessing all of us can think of others who simply verbalize continually, typically getting themselves into trouble. Sometimes you just want to say to them, “Don’t you realize that the more you talk, the more you’re digging your own hole?” You just see it coming—they put the proverbial noose around their own neck and tighten it with every additional word of bravado, ego, bitterness, deceit, and the like.
The writer of Proverbs 10 recognized this issue, too. Indeed, he concluded, “When there are many words, sin is unavoidable, but the one who controls his lips is prudent” (Prov. 10:19). It happens—when we just keep talking, sin will work its way to our lips. Thus, godly wisdom, it seems, sometimes means being quiet.
At other times, the tongue can be an instrument of teaching and instruction; for the righteous one, the tongue is “pure silver” (Prov. 10:20). It is the reflection of a clean heart just as the heart and tongue of the wicked are of “little value” (Prov. 10:20). Our heart and our speech are so interwoven that we cannot speak of one without connecting it to the other.
The question I have for myself today is whether I’m ever that person who speaks too much and listens too little. I fear that just as I wonder why others seemingly can’t see that trait in themselves, I, too, might miss it in me at times. My prayer is that when I do speak, my words would always feed others.
- Check your words today. Pray before you speak.
- Intentionally speak words that edify others today.
PRAYER: “God, give me ‘lips of the righteous’” (Prov. 10:32).
TOMORROW’S READING: Proverbs 13-16