“Arghhhh, @#$%&!…” Is this what comes out of your mouth when things are not the way you want? Or maybe when you hit your thumb instead of the nail? Those bad words find a way out of our mouth so quickly that we do not have time to hold them back. When we realize, they are already out there.
I remember when I was young and became a Christian. A lot of things started to change in my life; I stopped drinking, changed my companions, stopped fighting, but had no idea that my mouth was still dirty. Until a day when I was talking with my mom, and she suddenly stopped talking. I looked at her and asked, “what happened?” she turned to me and said, “Did you pay attention to what you just said?” I answered, “No, why? Did I say something wrong?” She calmly, which was way different from her style, said, “You should be more careful with what you say.” She did not need to say anything else. At that moment I realized that my mouth had not been changed yet. I was a new Christian with an old mouth.
From that day on, I took some steps that helped me take control of my mouth. The first thing that I did was to make a list of Bible verses that talk about mouth and word. Here are some of them:
I learned that a bad mouth was a characteristic of the wicked:
“Psa. 10:7 His mouth is full of curses and lies and threats; trouble and evil are under his tongue.”
I learned that our words just express what it is in our hearts:
“Luke 6:45 The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.”
I learned that we will have to give account for every careless word that we pronounce:
“Matt. 12:36 But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken.”
I learned that we should control our mouth:
“Eph. 4:29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”
I memorized those verses so I would have them in my mind, heart, and mouth when the opportunity to say something bad emerged.
Another thing that I did was to make a list of the bad words that I used to say and come up with an expression or word to substitute them, so, I would always have something to say when the opportunity to curse arrived.
Finally I recognized that I could not do it by myself, like the psalmists I learned to pray, “Psa. 141:3 Set a guard over my mouth, O LORD; keep watch over the door of my lips.” And “Psa. 19:14 May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.”
This whole process took some time, prayer and discipline. But it was well worth it. I am not saying that I am perfect, far from this. But the changes were visible, not only for me, but also for everybody who knew me. It just takes a small step, a small decision to achieve a great change.
Have a blessed week,