July 29th 2009

Two Eyes, Two Ears, One Tongue

“My dear brothers and sisters, always be willing to listen and slow to speak.”
James 1:19 (NCV)

Surely there is a pointed lesson in the construction of our heads. We have two eyes, two ears and two nostrils-organs that are receptors of information, means by which we can gather knowledge-but only one tongue. By the use of the tongue we can impart feelings, beliefs, attitudes and moods. Isn’t it obvious that we must take time to sift through all this information that is coming to us through three pairs of sensors before we exercise one means of expressing what we make of it?

It has been said that we get too much exercise jumping to conclusions. It is true that once something has been said it cannot be unsaid. Perhaps the picture of our head gives a key to how we should handle the information we receive. If we took three times as long to consider before we spoke, we probably would say a lot less and what we did say would be more a way to peace than to anger.

Someone who is quick to respond is bound, from time to time, to say the wrong thing, and to regret it. But once it is said it is very difficult to put the matter right. Our words should seek to remove the heat from a situation and to produce peace in its stead. This is the righteous use of the tongue.

James concludes his thought with these words, “Do not become angry easily, because anger will not help you live the right kind of life God wants.”(verse 20) God would have us live in peace with one another and the proper use of the senses, listening, considering then speaking words of righteousness , would go a long way in producing this desired result.

Father in heaven, thank you for the wonderful gift of all my senses and the joy that they can bring. Help me to use them wisely and in such a way that they can bring joy to others. Help me to resist the temptation to respond without proper consideration and, instead, to be a peace-maker through the words that I speak.

Study by David Stirk