Those of you who know me personally, know that I have struggled to tame my tongue since my rebellious teen years. That's not limited to cursing - - that includes failing to care how others receive the things I say or lacking the filter that softens the edges of the sharp words that project out of these unglossed lips from time to time. I've resolved to get this bad habit, if you will, under control many times but here I sit again knowing that it is still very much a full-fledged war that rages on inside of me. While grocery shopping (of all things & of all places) at our local Winco, I passed by a revolving bookcase and peaked at it out of mere curiosity. This book's title screamed at me right there in the supermarket nearly knocking me off my feet! I knew it just had to be there for me and me alone! I started looking around in a panic wondering who knows? I snuck this little devotional into my cart and proceeded to the checkout counter where I struck up a conversation with the clerk in an attempt to distract her from my purchase. At Winco we bag our own groceries and for once, I was grateful for this! I quickly shoved the pocket-sized book into a brown paper sack, you know the ones people bag wine or other glass bottles in? I rushed home with my buys and unloaded the car and put the groceries away, in this process I put the brown sack on my nightstand and basically forgot all about it.
While cleaning off my nightstand recently I opened the bag again and vowed to begin the 30-day challenge in the next 30-day month - well here it is, June, 30 days. Here's to day one.
30 Days to Taming Your Tongue - What you say (and don't say) will improve your relationships by Deborah Smith Pegues
Day One - The Lying Tongue
Lies come in four primary form: deceitfulness, half-truths, exaggerations, and flattery. (today touches base with the first three and flattery will be tomorrow).
Deceitfulness: Whoever would love life and see good days must keep his tongue from evil and his lips from deceitful speech - 1 Peter 3:10 Engaging in deceitfulness is a slap in God's face and has dire consequences. When we make a choice not to trust Him to handle a situation, we, in essence, decide He is a liar and will renege on His promise to meet every need. We then proceed to make our own way by any means necessary -- even being deceptive. In doing so we forfeit the good life God had planned for us.
Half-Truths: A painful reality is that any intent to deceive is a lie -- period. I find it interesting that the word "integrity derives from "integer," which is a mathematical term. An integer is a whole number as opposed to a fraction. When we walk in integrity, we tell the whole truth and not just a fraction or part of it.
Exaggerating: The danger in exaggerating is that those who are familiar with a person's propensity to stretch the truth will discount everything he says. The paradox of exaggerating; a person stretches the truth to make something sound more believable, but then he loses all credibility because he exaggerates. When you relate story or an incident, know that it is okay to tell it with enthusiasm; just avoid the exaggerations (absolute terms like "everybody," nobody," and "always") Resist the urge to be the center of attention by engaging in this form of lying. All liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death - Revelations 21:8 Death means separation. The first death is the separation of the spirit from the body; the second death is eternal separation of the spirit from God. Deliver my soul, O Lord, from lying lips, and from a deceitful tongue - Psalm 120:2 Have you been trusting God by telling the truth and leaving the consequences to Him, or do you (like me) need to join the psalmist in his prayer for deliverance?
My mouth speaks what is true, for my lips detest wickedness. All the words of my mouth are just; none of them is crooked or perverse - Proverbs 8:7-8
I've turned the above Proverb into a prayer, feel free to do the same if it's been laid on your heart to do so.