The Restraining Order
We are admonished in James to be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to wrath. When tempers are flared and emotions are flying high, it’s nearly impossible to follow this command. Sometimes we need a spiritual restraining order put on our mouths.
When dealing with different issues where a conversation needs to take place, it’s important to remember that the first thing we should do is pray. There are several things we can pray before approaching the other person, be it our husband or someone else.
1. Pray for God to adjust your attitude so that you aren’t bitter and full of angry, hurtful words when you do speak.
2. Pray for the Lord to season your words with His grace and to tenderize your tongue before you speak.
3. Pray for the Lord to direct you in the timing of bringing up the issue.
4. Pray that both parties will not be sidetracked by bringing up past hurts.
5. Pray for both parties to be receptive to hear out the other person.
6. Pray for a quick and speedy resolve that is agreeable to both parties.
7. Pray for there not to be any resentment or bitter feelings once the conversation has taken place.
It is important to remember that while we may speak our mind, we must be careful to mind our manners in the process!
There are many reasons why it’s good for the Lord to put a restraining order on our mouths.
1. When we speak too much, sin is often close behind.
2. A harsh word can stir up anger. (Prov. 15:1)
3. We can be like the fool who gushes folly. (Prov. 15:2)
4. Sometimes our tongue can speak deceitful things. (Prov. 15:4)
5. In our anger and hurt, we can speak death to a relationship. (Prov. 18:21)
When the restraining order is in place, there can be positive results:
1. We will be wise and learn to hold our tongues. (Prov. 10:19)
2. Our soft answer will turn away wrath. (Prov. 15:1)
3. Our tongue will be filled with the fruit of knowledge.
4. Our tongue can be a healing tree of life. (Prov. 15:4)
5. We will learn to speak words of life to those around us. (Prov. 18:21)
6. We will speak pleasant words that promote instruction, and are sweet to the soul. (Prov. 16:21,23-24)
So is getting a restraining order on your to-do list for the day?
© 2004, Stacy R Miller