Thursday, June 14, 2007

If You Can’t Say Something Good…

My Grandmother had many little sayings she used to teach me moral lessons. She would say things like “Two wrongs don’t make a right”, or “Neither a borrower nor a lender be”, or “Two heads are better than one”. One that has stuck with me is “If you can’t say something good, don’t say nothing at all.” (Excuse the double negative, but that is how she said it!)

Most often this cliché was used to explain how you shouldn’t run someone down, pointing out their faults, and criticizing their actions. But God has given me a different revelation about this simple statement. When you allow your mouth to spread bad words you weaken your relationship with God, and give Satan an opening in which to destroy you. Let me explain.

In Ephesians 6:12 we read that “we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places”. This verse refers to principalities and spiritual hosts of wickedness. Make no mistake! This is a reference to Satan and his minions. They are there just as He is - walking to and fro upon the earth, seeking whom they can destroy (Job 2:2, 1 Peter 5:8).

Yet Satan has a great disadvantage to that of the Holy Spirit in controlling our lives. As the Holy Spirit lives inside us, He knows the thoughts we have, and can speak directly to our hearts. Satan must wait for us to open our mouths, and tell him the things within our hearts and minds. Once we do, he listens to hear our issues of stress, the problems we have with each other, and our personal weaknesses. His gorilla warfare attack can then be planned, and he will strike you where it hurts most.

“For He who would love life and see good days, Let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips from speaking deceit.” - 1 Peter 3:10

Letting your words roam free opens you up to the invasion of the spirits of evil. But you can counter this with the exact opposite. Do you know what it takes to bring God near to you? PRAISE! Praise is a powerful tool in that it can bring God into your presence. II Chronicles 5:13-14 tells us that we can bring God into a house and fill it as with a cloud by praising Him. Psalms 22:3 tells us that he is “enthroned” in the praises of His people. Even as Jesus taught us to pray He said “Our Father who art in Heaven, Hallowed be thy name” (Matthew 6:9). The word “hallowed” is defined by Webster’s as “regarded as holy; venerated; sacred”.

“To You, O my Strength, I will sing praises; For God is my defense, My God of mercy.” - Psalm 59:17

Where there is light, there can be no darkness. The two cannot co-exist. In John 8:12 Jesus says “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” As Satan and his demons are defined as the “rulers of darkness of this age” (Ephesians 6:12), we should understand that he can simply be sent out by bringing the light of the world, Jesus, near. Praise is the instrument in which to do just that!

Your words can cause you to sin! God cannot look upon sin. His presence is taken from us when we sin with our mouths. Lies and exaggerations tear down your spirit by giving you a spirit of deceit, which is attributed to Satan, the father of lies (John 8:44). Gossip (which is wrong even if the story is true), can break relationships, and tear down the character of both the rumored, and the tale bearer. Matthew 15:11 says “Not what goes into the mouth defiles a man; but what comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man.” Don’t allow yourself to be defiled! Put a bridle on your tongue, and a leash on your mouth! Proverbs 21:23 says “Whoever guards his mouth and tongue Keeps his soul from troubles.” Guard your words and speak only those things that edify and lift up God and those around you. In so doing you will avoid many problems, and bring greater joy into your life.

Remember, if you can’t say something good, then don’t say nothing at all!

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