My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry. James 1:19
Nitroglycerin is an explosive yellow liquid made by nitrating glycerol, used in explosives such as dynamite. It is also used in medicine as a vasodilator in the treatment of angina pectoris.
The same product that can blow up a bridge can sooth the heart. Sounds a lot like our words and actions because they as well can be deadly or life-giving. We must think before we speak and act. Often we blow up bridges in our lives (relationships) because we react impulsively. There is great power in our words and behaviors!
We must learn to tame our tongues. We must place guards and boundaries of what should come out of our mouths. James understood the power of our words:
When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. James 3:3-6
He went on to share how our words are like nitroglycerin – good and bad:
With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water. James 3:9-12
The future and destiny of those around us are determined by our words. We must guard our mouths and make sure life comes forth and not cursing. Begin guarding your words today and allow life to flow freely out to those around. Speak life.