Perhaps you are one of the multiplied millions of people who’ve been saddened, disappointed, even shocked by the “un-presidential” behavior of those who are seeking the highest office in the land. Far from being, at least in the traditional sense – “presidential”, these candidates have often been more suited for appearances on a Jerry Springer show, than suited to represent the United States of America before the world.
Unfortunately, their antics are just mirroring the decline in our culture of civility, respect for others, and old fashioned good manners. There was a time not so long ago when it was considered impolite to interrupt someone when they were speaking, but watching the “talk” shows of today, it’s common to hear three or four people talking at once!
Social media has facilitated a platform where one can make their feelings known about anyone and anything by typing a few words and clicking a button – then instantly, the whole world is aware of what’s on their mind (a very dangerous thing in many cases). Get “ticked off” about something and respond immediately via email, text, or messenger…this can cause big problems!
What does any of this have to do with faith, the Bible, or Christianity, you ask? Quite a bit actually! Jesus said, “But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment.” And He was by no means alone when it comes to Biblical admonitions about being very careful with our words.
“The tongue is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison” according to the Scripture. We should be “slow to speak” – that’s in the Bible too! “Death and life are in the power of the tongue”, that is, we have the power to bless and to curse, to insult or encourage – and here’s the deal…people are listening to our words and they form an opinion about us.
Since we (Christ followers) are supposed to be salt and light in our culture, then we must guard our words very carefully. Our words should preserve, not destroy relationships. Our words should reflect the Light (and spirit) of Jesus, not the darkness of hate and contempt.
Christians are called to be different, even a “glowing in the dark” kind of different! (That’s just an alternate way of saying “Let your light shine”.)
Realizing then, that we will one day answer for every word we’ve spoken, and that our words have great impact on those who hear – let’s do something Biblical…be slow to speak. We’ll never regret it!