Today’s reading is Proverbs 15. (Behind the scenes bonus info: any time there’s a picture of food or scenery it means I have a crazy morning and no time to pull out the pens, journal, and such.) 😆
I’m always struck by verse 4. A perverse or deceitful tongue breaks the spirit. We’ve talked about the wounding power of our words, but we must understand that it’s more than hurt feelings at stake. We’re talking about broken spirits.
In Exodus 6, when Moses tried to help the people experience freedom, it says that the people wouldn’t listen on account of their harsh conditions and their broken spirits.
We’ve all experienced it, no doubt. Something good is on the horizon for you but you’re afraid to try for it because you remember something someone said to you in the past. Something that made you feel unworthy of that good thing. Or incapable of achieving it.
One good way to help us not break people’s spirits with our words is also found in this proverb.
The heart of the righteous ponders how to answer… vs 28
Did someone hurt my feelings? Let me ponder and pray before responding.
Did someone’s actions, words, posts offend me? Let me think about it before I make a stink about it.
Did my kid do something that I told them not to do and the result was exactly what I warned them about? Let me pause so that I don’t spill out words in a moment of haste that can break their spirit for years to come.
Hear me clearly, I’m not saying (nor is Scripture) that we ignore wrong. That we are silent to injustice. That we keep the peace at all costs. We just need to ponder first. Pause first. Pray first.
Then, we can respond in a way that is godly and appropriate for the occasion (Ephesians 4:29.)
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