Power Verses: Matthew 12:34b-37
For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil. I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.
Have you ever just sat and listened to people talk? Some people can’t go a sentence without lacing their speech with profanities. Others can’t go long without cutting someone else down, usually someone not in the room. And then there are those who talk on and on either about themselves, or something very surface just to keep control of the conversation. As you sit and listen, begin to try to guess what that person’s spiritual condition is, based on what they’re saying. You can tell what is in people’s hearts by what they say for sure.
Now think about yourself. Do your words reflect that Jesus in in your heart? Only Jesus can change our hearts by His transforming work. If you’re looking to see your words changed, call out to Jesus to change your heart. But there are things we can do in that transformation project. What we fill our minds with gets stored up in our hearts. If you fill your mind with Scripture and things that are uplifting, that is what will come out. But if you watch garbage shows on TV and hang around people who curse everyone and everything, that’s what comes out of your mouth.
The other thing that can get stored up in our hearts is bitterness and resentment. If you let wrongs that others have done to you sit and stew inside of you, angry and bitter words come out. Ephesians 4:31 picks up on that, “Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice.” That means resolve the issues that hang around and pull on you. Forgive and work through unfinished business, lest the bitterness that gets stored in your heart comes tumbling out of your mouth.
Ephesians 4:29 gives us a challenge: “Let no unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building others up, according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” (NIV) That is a challenge to apply that takes self control to not say things that need not be said. And then it takes intentionally speaking good things to others, things that will build people up and benefit their needs. And when you do that, the day that you stand before Jesus and give account for your words will be a proud day.