Training Your Mouth for Marriage

Training Your Mouth for Marriage July 20, 2018

Proverbs 18:21 says Death and life are in the power of the tongue. That’s an astounding statement. The words we say can bring life or bring death.

In other words, God can use the way you speak to create a great life, a great marriage, and a great family. But the devil wants to use your tongue to destroy those things. All words are consequential. Good words bring good results and bad words bring bad results. There are no neutral words.

I learned this the hard way. Speaking is one of my gifts, and personally I am never at a loss for words. But early in my marriage, I used my words as a weapon. I could punish Karen with the things I said. I dominated her and accused her, and saw Karen wilt before my eyes. It nearly destroyed our relationship.

Words can hurt, but words also create life. You fell in love saying good things to each other. Your first weeks together were spent in deep communication. Every good marriage is built on a foundation of strong, honest, positive words.

With that in mind, I want you to think about something that Jesus says in Matthew 12. Talking to the PhariseesÑwho often opposed HimÑJesus compared our hearts to trees. He said our words were the fruits produced by those trees.

For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good things, and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things. But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned. (Matthew 12:34-37)

When your heart is good, your words will be good. When your heart is mean, your words will be mean. A heart filled with hate will speak hateful words. A heart filled with love will speak loving words.

People will absolutely know your heart by the nature of your words, and Jesus says our words accumulate in the presence of God. He’s recording us. Those words will meet us in judgment. Eventually, we’ll have to give account for them.

For any of us who have been careless with the way we speak, that sounds like bad news. But the good news is that God’s recorder has an erase button. When we take responsibility for our careless or hurtful words asking for forgiveness and relying on the blood of Jesus to cover our sins, God erases them.

It’s important to take responsibility for our words before God. But we also need to take responsibility with our spouse. Say something like this: I’m sorry, honey. I got upset and I said something I should not have said. I was angry but that doesn’t justify unkindness. Please forgive me.

Words do not evaporate. They are lasting and can have an enormous impact on our marriage. This week, pay attention to how you speak to your spouse. Notice your tone and language. Are your words negative, hurtful and accusatory? Or are they uplifting and encouraging? Do you praise your spouse or tear him or her down?

Whether your words are good or bad, someday you will have to account for them. Your words have great power. Use that power wisely.

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