Daily Devotionals

August 3rd, 2022

Read James 3:5b-8 NIV

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.

All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.

I remember one summer and the time I spent at my grandparents house so clearly. My cousin and I had somehow managed to convince our parents to allow us to spend an enormous amount of time together at grandma and grandpa’s house. We spent the days tucked away in the upstairs bedroom singing our hearts out to “We Built This City” by Starship on her boombox and acting in our very own plays on the wide front porch. That is until the day our singing was interrupted by sirens and firetrucks speeding up the driveway. My grandfather had spent the morning burning brush on the side hill. A task he had probably done hundreds of times before. But on this day a breeze picked up and the fire quickly caught the dry grass on the hillside, drawing the fire across the hill and  into flames my grandfather could not control. It happened in an instant. 

Just like fire can catch quickly on a hillside, consuming all the dry brush and grass in its path, so can harsh or careless words in haste catch and burn relationships, consuming our hearts and our minds in their path. If we aren’t careful, the words we speak can get out of control quickly; before we even realize the damage they will do. Once those words have been spoken, oftentimes there is little we can do to contain the damage. It sometimes even spills over to those around us, drawing them into the fiery barrage of words as well.

That day on the hill my grandfather acted quickly and called the fire department and the damage was minimal. He needed help. And so do we. On our own we have no hope of controlling our tongue. We could work really hard…and still not be able to control the inferno our  words are capable of creating. No human can. But God can! And His desire is for us to surrender our thoughts and our words to Him. Allow Him to have control today .