Gail Rodgers Sharing the Journey

Trusting God Part 15 - Fire

The news announcer stated the facts. 244 houses had burned to the ground. I wondered if my friend’s was among them. She had phoned days earlier to ask for prayer for this desperate situation. Forest fires! Such devastation from a single spark!

It reminded me of a verse from the Bible that I read this week:

“Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue is also a fire….” James 3:6

I have been witness to some devastating “fires” started by a careless tongue. Words spoken carelessly, thoughtlessly, selfishly, angrily or hastily are often the spark that ignites a blaze in relationships and homes, work places and churches.

Think about what has come out of your mouth this past week. Did you carelessly throw a spark out on dry grass and were surprised at the quick spread of flames? Did relationships get frayed around the edge because you had an uncontrolled tongue? It is so easy to do.

We justify it by tiredness, stressful situations, or another persons aggravating behavior.

God has a lot to say about the tongue and the words we speak. If you are having trouble in this area, read the book of Proverbs this week and underline every verse that speaks about words, lips and tongue. You will find a wealth of help from God’s word. Ask for His Holy Spirit to set a guard at your mouth. Ask for His help with the words that come out of our mouth. Be quick to ask His forgiveness and the forgiveness of others when your tongue throws out sparks. When tough issues must be addressed, ask first for the help of God’s Holy Spirit as you respond. Always keep your distance from gossip. Gossip is already a small blaze and you make a choice to throw water or gas on it as it comes to your ears and tempts your tongue.

You will be amazed at the difference in your relationships, your home, your job, your church and your life when God’s Holy Spirit is the first call on your lips. God says,

“He who guards his lips, guards his life.” Proverbs 13:3

prayer & reflection

Father God,
Today I ask that You would set a guard at my lips. Forgive me for the times I have let my tongue run off with words that were not helpful or graceful in any way. Help me today, by the power of Your Holy Spirit, to be careful about giving quick retorts, unsolicited opinions, and critical, negative comments. Help me to mind my tongue as I would mind a match in a dry forest. Give me Your wisdom and grace when I need to address situations and issues and give me a sense of the right timing in addressing them. Thank you that You provide help and strength to me in this area when I call out to You.
Guard my tongue today for I ask this in the strong name of Jesus, Amen.