The Power of the Tongue

Bad attitudes tend to rub off. Easily.

The other day, a friend told me about how one of her daughters had mocked something her little sister loved to do. Immediately, the little sister’s attitude started to change. She began to question the activity. Soon she decided she didn’t like it either.

Thankfully, her mother was wise and was able to see the problem and correct the attitudes.

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Sadly, it’s not just kids that struggle with defiling attitudes.

Often we adults are more subtle, but in our day and age it’s socially acceptable (and sometimes even “cool”) to complain about school or work or kids. Other times our attitudes take the form of “prayer requests” or “just being honest.”

Granted, there is a time for unburdening our hearts and letting a friend help us carry our load. There is a time to ask for honest help. There is a time to express real grievances.

However, we must be so careful to set a guard over our lips, because our words can defile. The tongue can be a “deadly poison.” Bad attitudes toward work or family rub off and poison our children, our husband, our friends, and our church.

Thankfully, the flip side is equally true.

Instead of a poison, “a wholesome tongue is a tree of life.” (Prov 15:4) Many times a friend’s joyful words have breathed fresh life into my day. The mess of mommyhood instantly seems less overwhelming when a friend happily asks, “Isn’t it just amazing that we’ve been entrusted with little souls to nurture and raise?!”

Our words hold great power.

With David may we pray, ” Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.”

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  1. says

    That is so true, Anna! So many times I’ve heard children who used to love school start complaining about it because that is what their older siblings do. Maybe we don’t complain about school anymore 🙂 but it is so easy to say something negative about some activity or actions or make a slighting remark that could not only hurt a person, but could cause a chain reaction causing others to be just a little more negative than we were and on it goes until critical and slighting remarks are the “thing to do.”

    Sometimes it may not seem that a positive remark or comment does anything, but when you are on the receiving end of it, what a blessing it can be! And it also can have a chain reaction for the good. 🙂 Thanks for the encouragement!

    • anna says

      Such a good point about the chain reaction. It is SO sad to see children that used to love school end up saying they don’t like it anymore because of peer pressure.

      May we start chain reactions in the other direction. 🙂

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