For me, certainly one of my major battles involved harnessing what came out of my mouth. In all honesty I have not yet arrived. I am still a work in progress…but I’m in good company. On more than one occasion I had attempted to stop on my own to no avail. It was clearly evident that I need help greater than myself. You see, people thought my insults, rudeness and sarcasm were funny. If God healed me from this would people still like me?
Needless to say, since having asked God to temper my tongue, I no longer care about the acceptance of the world. What God thinks of us is far more important. In displaying God to our families, we should do our best to emulate Him. Men, as the spiritual leaders of our households, that is our obligation.
From the minute we wake up in the morning to the moment we close our eyes at the end of the day, plenty of people and circumstances have the potential to tear us down if given the opportunity. Ask yourself: do I want to contribute to the “tearing down” process, or would I rather be a part of the edification process? Our marriages need to be the place where we build up and strengthen each other against the arrows of the world.
Are you assessing your behaviors as you interact with the world? Are you learning to tame your tongue and gather yourself before you respond out of emotion? Are you examining your motivations and responses aimed at your spouse, or are you simply taking everything personally? It is not just an issue of what words come out of our mouth; we also need to consider what we allow into our minds. External influences can have a great impact on what goes on in our minds, which in turn impacts the words that come pouring out of our mouths.
…whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.-Philippians 4:8
Have you asked God to show you how to better tame the critical spirit and breed a heart of understanding and edification? What is the potential of such a transformation in your marriage, in your life?
God allowed me to retained my sense of humor through the process yet has filtered my communication in such a way as to be more edifying to others. But again, I am still a work in progress and try to be more intentional about my behaviors, He continues to clean up the mess. Thank you, Lord!
©2014 Eric A. Disney, Marriage by Design
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