“If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless (James 1:26).”
As I continue to memorize James I often find myself “smacked” by the very words I am reading. The tight rein on his tongue is what clobbered me today. The way that James uses “rein” is the same way a rider would rein his horse. A runaway horse is a dangerous thing and so is runaway tongue.
We’ve all been around people who have don’t rein in their tongues. The gossip at work, the “Gladys Kravitz” kind of neighbor, the person who has “prayer concerns” for someone they barely know. Really, all of the people I mentioned are not reining in their tongues.
It is difficult to be around people who have runaway tongues and not get pulled into that way of talking. I strive to not speak that way –even when tempted. But how does one keep from speaking that way?
For me, I focus on the verse in Philippians 4:8 which says, “Finally, brothers, 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.”
I want to make sure that when it comes to my mouth, my tongue has reins on it and I have control. The control I speak of is not self-willed, it is Spirit-willed. I know I cannot do it alone. (See Galatians 5:22-23 for more perspective).
Thankfully, God is on the Throne and I am not alone… neither are you… Hallelujah!