“ I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Galatians 2:20
It was several weeks ago that I was scrolling through my Twitter feed catching up on all the latest updates when I came across a post from Pastor Rick Warren (author of Purpose Driven Life). It was one of those quotes that literally stops you dead in your tracks and knocks the spiritual wind out of you, if you know what I mean. True conviction flooded my heart as I read…
“I cannot live the crucified life (Galatians 2:20) unless my tongue is nailed to the cross. My words betray my true condition.” – Rick Warren
It was one of those “wow” moments for me as I suddenly found myself reflecting on all the ways in just that day alone that my words had revealed the ugliness within my heart – things I had said in anger and frustration, gossip that had too easily poured out of my mouth, negative speech… I quickly grabbed the nearest thing I could find to write on and jotted the quote down, determined to meditate on this and let it sink in, hopefully resulting in changed behavior.
I’m ashamed to say that there have been countless times since that I’ve allowed my tongue to disgrace those that would hear what I have to say, knowing full well that God’s Word clearly instructs me that my speech should give grace to those who listen (Ephesians 4:29). On far too many occasions, I’ve allowed words to flow from my mouth that are laced with anger, malice, and bitterness as opposed to the love and joy that ought to flow from the life of a sinner saved by grace. Today was one of those days, a day of verbal failure as I chose to let my emotions lead me as opposed to the Spirit. Anybody had one of those days recently? Thankfully, I know that God is still at work within me, and it wasn’t even moments after the words came out of my mouth, that I was filled with a godly sorrow over my sin. My mind was brought back to the above verse and quote as I confessed in humility my sin to the Lord.
Why is it that failing in this area comes so easily to us? I’m really not sure if women are more prone to this than men are as some might say, but I do know that this is an area of moral failure on our part as Christians. It’s a contradiction to profess faith in Jesus Christ and from the same mouth spew verbal venom on others. God gave us our mouths to praise Him, and instead we far too often use it to criticize His creation. My prayer today is that you and I will begin to walk in victory in this area. I pray that we will see that the crucified life requires every part to be surrendered to God’s authority, especially our tongues. I pray today and the days to come that we will choose righteousness as opposed to selfishness when it comes to our speech. May the words of our mouths and the meditations of our hearts be pleasing and acceptable in your sight, O Lord.