35 Good people bring out good things from their good treasure. But evil people bring out evil things from their evil treasure. 36 I tell you that people will have to answer on Judgment Day for every useless word they speak. 37 By your words you will be either judged innocent or condemned as guilty.”
I grew up around a lot of folks who said what they thought without much restraint. I don’t know if it’s something that is particularly prevalent in my family or if it’s more of a southern thing. Recently I’ve said a few things at home to my wife that were put out there before I really thought about it, and had I taken five seconds to do so I would have chosen different words or I wouldn’t have said them at all. I’ve also been on the receiving end of unkind words spoken about me and to me. Have you been there yourself? It’s no fun.
I think that Jesus was more of a “think before you speak” kind of person. When the woman caught in adultery was brought before Jesus and the legal experts and Pharisees questioned him, he bent down and wrote on the ground with his finger. I always saw that as Jesus taking a moment to compose his thoughts and words, and what wonderful words he spoke when he stood up again.
Maybe we ought to be more like that when we speak to our loved ones, or our co-workers, or the people we go to church with, maybe we ought to think about how our words are going to impact other people before we speak. Jesus tells us in this scripture that what comes out of our mouths says something about the condition of our hearts and that we will be judged by all those useless idle words that we carelessly let fly. Sticks and stone may break my bones, – but bones heal over time, where the impact that words may have can very well last a lifetime and carry over from one generation to another.
Lets all try to think about what we say before we say it and if necessary, temper it with the grace and love that we have available to us through God’s Spirit.
May God Bless you!