While speaking with a friend a few months ago, I was made aware of a simple but profound truth. God tells us in His Word that words matter and we are to be slow to speak and quick to listen. We are to be careful about what we say and not let our tongue control us. Every time I speak to this friend whether it is a phone call or through text, he always says the most beautiful and lovely things. To give you some idea and context, he is a native Korean but learned English in England several years ago, therefore, when he speaks English he has a British accent. Yes, his accent is lovely and the words he chooses are very "English/British" but it is the manner and meaning behind his words that truly bring those lovely words to life and honestly bring a tear to my eyes sometimes. He has gone through many battles and storms in his life, as we all do, but he never lets the disappointments or hardships get to his heart, he continues to have a positive mindset and pour out encouragement, understanding, comfort, and healing to others through his words. He speaks with love and sincerity providing some humor along the way.
Now as we were talking about life I said to him, "you always say the most lovely things." He replied, "it is how I was raised. If you speak lovely words then the children will speak lovely because that will be what they know." I paused for a moment to really think about what he said. "If you speak lovely words to children, that will be what they know." It is not enough to be careful about what I say or not say, it matters what is inside that is pouring out. Am I filling myself with "loveliness" and God's Word so the fruit of the Spirit pours out on those around me or am I letting the world and "busyness" of the day take up the room in my mind and heart?
"Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you. But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at last your care for me has flourished again; though you surely did care, but you lacked opportunity. Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." - Phillippians 4:4-13
May our gentleness be known to all men! Think and meditate on whatever things are: True, Noble, Just, Pure, Lovely, Of Good Report, anything that is of any Virtue or Praiseworthy! Be content in whatever state you are in because you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you!
Guard your tongue, be slow to speak and quick to listen, and speak loveliness (anything that is encouraging, comforting, loving, caring, admonishing, or helpful). Most importantly meditate and fill your mind with God's Word so that His truth, love, and the fruit of the Spirit will pour out of you and be a witness to all those you meet.
Lord, I cry out to You; make haste to me! Give ear to my voice when I cry out to You. Let my prayer be set before You as incense, the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice. Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips. Do not incline my heart to any evil thing, to practice wicked works with men who work iniquity; and do not let me eat of their delicacies. - Psalm 141:1-4
And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. - Colossians 3:15-17
So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God. - James 1:19-20