“But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and they defile a man.” Matthew 15:18
I have been a person who for most of my years called it like I saw it. I was told as a little girl that I was “sassy”. Later it became “opinionated”, “strong-willed”, “direct.” However, the truth was that I really didn’t speak out on things unless I really felt very strongly about them. I guess you can say I can be very vocal about the things I’m passionate about. I believed the things I spoke out about were worth speaking about and that the end result would be worth all the struggle. But that wasn’t normally the case. My words almost never yielded the response I was hoping for. (I know now that’s because my words have no power unless the Lord puts power into them and He will only do that when He commands me to speak into someone’s life).
Later when I became a Christian, actually much later in my walk of faith, I began to realize the damage my self perceived “gift of gab” was wreaking on those who were “blessed” enough to be on the receiving end of it. In an effort to quickly change and control my mouth, I started overcompensating. When I would feel really strongly about something, I’d silence myself. It was just too dangerous to risk it. I was already dealing with the repercussions of my unbridled tongue in several of my relationships and so I became almost fearful to speak my mind and share my heart. I failed often at this and so every time I did speak up, despite my good intentions I was always worried afterwards that I didn’t say it exactly right or that some miscommunication happened along the way and I would be completely misunderstood. The struggle was real! I was going against my nature and although I was doing so out of an desire to be obedient to Christ and bridling my tongue the way I believe HE wanted me to, I was going in alone-depending on my own strength and ability. And so my all or nothing behavior once again left me stranded feeling like I was in the middle of no where. Although I was trying to be a good Christian in this area of my life, I had the feeling I was missing the mark. Falling short of true submission before the Lord and suffering the consequences of my fleshly failures. I was miserable!