TAME THAT TONGUE:
LET US THINK AND PRAY BEFORE WE SPEAK.
Pope Francis gave a very useful tip in our daily dealings with the people around us:
“Take care of your speech, purifying your language of offensive words, of vulgarity and of decadent worldly expressions;”
How many times we have regretted saying inappropriate words which offended other people because of our impulsiveness, insensitivity, bitterness, envy, hatred or worse still, our cruelty! That is why, out of love for God and our neighbour, we need to tame our tongue many times during the day by exerting more to live in God’s presence: Let us recall what St. James taught:
“Anyone who makes no mistakes in speaking is perfect, able to keep the whole body in check with a bridle. 3 If we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we guide their whole bodies… So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great exploits.
How great a forest is set ablaze by a small fire!6 And the tongue is a fire. The tongue is placed among our members as a world of iniquity; it stains the whole body, sets on fire the cycle of nature, and is itself set on fire by hell. 7 For every species of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by the human species, 8 but no one can tame the tongue—a restless evil, full of deadly poison. 9 With it we bless the Lord and Father, and with it we curse those who are made in the likeness of God. 10 From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this ought not to be so (Jam 3: 2-10).”
WE NEED TO THINK FIRST BEFORE WE SPEAK, AND MAKE SURE THAT WE SPEAK IN TRUTH AND IN CHARITY. St. Josemaria, in his book, The Way, nn. 443 & 445 wrote:
“Don’t make negative criticism: if you can’t praise, say nothing.” “Gossip is a disease that infects and poisons… It goes against charity, means a waste of energy, takes away peace and destroys one’s union with God.”
IF WE ARE ANGRY OR AGITATED, IT WOULD BE BETTER TO FOREGO SAYING THINGS WHICH WE MIGHT BE SORRY FOR AFTERWARDS, PRAY AT THE SAME TIME AND WAIT FOR THE OPPORTUNE MOMENT TO SAY THEM IF IT IS REALLY NECESSARY. Otherwise, we just have to let go and keep silent.
Dear brethren in Christ, let us meditate on the above ideas, formulate and live our resolutions. IF WE ONLY STRUGGLE MORE TO SEEK GOD’S PRESENCE AND SEE HIS IMAGE IN EACH AND EVERY PERSON AROUND US, HOW EASIER IT WOULD BE TO TAME OUR TONGUE, AVOID OFFENDING GOD AND OTHERS WITH ITS MISUSE, AND THUS SPEAK WITH TRUTH AND WITH CHARITY.
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