The average American has 30 conversations a day and you'll spend 1/5 of your life talking. In one year your conversations will fill 66 books of 800 pages a book. If you're a man you speak an average of 20,000 words a day. If you're a woman you speak 30,000 words a day. Every word that you speak originates in your mind with a thought.
Did you know that your mind is capable of storing over 100 trillion thoughts? It can handle enormous things. You have been given by God the freedom to choose what you think about. Proverbs 23:7 says, "As a man thinks in his heart, so he is." Whatever dominates your mind will dominate your life. The question is simply this, what do you think about the most? The root cause of stress, low self-esteem, depression and so on is the way that we choose to think. Whatever I think about is what I am becoming. What I am becoming is reflected by what I am SPEAKING. Your mind & your words are interconnected and they have incredible power! The Bible teaches us in Proverbs 18:21 that, "The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit."
Here's the deal, our mouths get us into a lot of trouble. In the Bible, the book of James talks more about the tongue more than any other book in the New Testament. Every chapter in the book of James says something about managing your mouth. He says, if you can control your mouth, you're perfect. He's not talking about sinless. The word "perfection" in Greek literally means "mature, healthy". We become healthy & mature by learning how to manage our minds & our mouths! At our mid-week service last night I continued our series on the book of James that we are adapting from Rick Warren. Here are some thoughts that I shared on why we must watch what we say...
1. MY TONGUE DIRECTS WHERE I GO . (James 3:3-4)
"When we put bits in the mouths of horses ... we can turn the whole animal." (vs. 3)
2. MY TONGUE CAN DESTROY WHAT I HAVE . (James 3:5-8)
Prov. 21:23 (GN) "If you want to stay out of trouble be careful what you say!"
3. MY TONGUE DISPLAYS WHO I AM . (James 3:9-12)
"For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks." Matt. 12:34 (see also Matt. 15:18-19)
SO WHAT'S THE SOLUTION?
1. GET A NEW MIND & HEART
"Rid yourself of all the offenses you have committed and get a new heart and a new spirit!" Ezekiel 18:31 (see also 2 Cor. 5:17)
2. ASK GOD FOR HELP EVERYDAY
"Set a guard over my mouth, O Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips." Psalm 141:3 (see also Psalms 19:14)
3. THINK BEFORE YOU SPEAK
"Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry." James 1:19
You can change what you think about. Remember, all change is a matter of choice. Change the direction of your thought life & everything else will follow. Proverbs 4:23 says, “be careful what you think; your life is shaped by your thoughts.” You’re not what you think you are, but what you think, you are. Remember, repentance (metanoia) means to change your mind. When we memorize, meditate (thought digestion) & confess God's Word over our lives we will be prospered & blessed. Ultimately our mind & hearts will change & we will be able to manage our mouths!