Have you ever talked yourself out of something awesome or talked yourself into something horrible? When we speak words of unkindness against someone or when we complain mercilessly, it’s an aggressive act of war. The bible tells us there is power in the tongue, in fact it says that life and death are in the tongue (Proverbs 18:21). It is a baffling thought to think that a person can destroy their lives or someone else’s life with their words. We see this first hand in the beginning with God’s people. Moses and his people wandered around the wilderness until a whole generation died out because of their complaining. It is possible to talk our way out of our inheritance with God.
Imagine yourself being set free from years of slavery and walking into a desert in search
of a promise. Your calloused feet tire from walking and sweat stings your almost healed wounds from your master’s whip. It feels like an eternity is slowly passing with each sunrise and sunset but, you keep walking. God appears to you as a cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night to guide your way (Exodus 13:21). Honey bread rains from the sky to keep you fed and water gushes from a rock to quench your thirst. This actually happened in another time but it can be applied to our lives today. Jesus frees us from being slaves to sin and He provides a way of escape from our temptations. There are countless blessings raining down on us on a daily basis and yet we find the time to murmur and complain.
Have you ever received a backward apology where someone apologies to you and inserts a damaging “if” between words that should comfort you? Instead of saying “I hurt you and I’m sorry” they may say “I’m sorry ‘if’ I hurt you”. Oh, the damage our words inflict. It goes the same for backhanded compliments or empty honor. Sounds like this; “She’s a pretty good preacher for someone with just a high school diploma.” and “He’s attractive for someone his age.” The list can go on but whether the words are abrasive or subtle they leave a trail of blood and daggers in hearts wherever they are spoken.
The Word of God tells us that “Out of the mouth, the heart speaks.” (Matthew 12:34) and that’s what is so damaging about the negative words we use, it is the evidence of who we really are. The trip through the wilderness to a promised land would have taken days to get to and yet it took the death of an entire generation and 40 years for a previously enslaved people to get to God’s promise. We know, as believers, we are heaven bound but we also have to understand that our words spoken in disobedience and dishonor can disqualify us from our heavenly inheritance. We shouldn’t miss out on God by talking ourselves out of blessings with sharp tongues. We should experience heaven on earth, receiving every gift God intended for us to have as we walk out this faith life. Let’s cut out our sharp tongues before we’re cut off from our inheritance.