I have been reminded recently about the power of the tongue. James says in his book, in chapter 3:3-6; 3 When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. 4 Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. 5 Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. 6 The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. [NIVUK]
Our tongues can cause a huge amount of damage not only to those we come into contact with, but also to the wider
church. Small negative, derogative comments can cause huge pain and division even though the tongue is one of the
smallest parts of the body. James refers to the tongue as a ship’s rudder or a horse’s bit, able to affect a much larger
This portion of scripture is usually used to warn us about the damage our tongues can have when we use them unwisely. But what if we were to flip the coin, so to speak, and consider the massive amount of good that can also be
achieved with the tongue.
Passing on positivity to others not only benefits them, but also gives us a sense of fulfilment and well-being.
Stopping for a moment when we are about the respond to someone, and the considering the consequences, may
enable us to build others and the church up, rather than demolishing!
“Pick your words carefully as it has the power to make the sentence beautiful or ugly…..” [Adil Adam Memon]
May God give each of us the wisdom and strength to control our tongues when necessary.