My brother-in-law, Wayne, was a “people person.” He enjoyed being with people and making them laugh. People also enjoyed being with him too, because he always brought smiles and encouragement wherever he went.
Wayne also had some unusual habits. One was brushing his tongue repeatedly. During a conversation, he would often say, “Excuse me, please” and walk away. After a few moments, he would return and begin the conversation precisely where it had ended. People were puzzled and did not feel comfortable asking where he went or what he did.
Finally, the suspense got the best of one of his friends and he asked, “Wayne, why do you walk off in the middle of a conversation? Where do you go and what do you do?”
“Oh,” he replied with a smile. “I go to the bathroom and brush my tongue. The tongue, you know, has more germs than our teeth, and if not brushed carefully and repeatedly, can cause a stink.” But, the story of the “tongue” does not end there.
“The tongue that brings healing is a tree of life, but a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit,” wrote Solomon. I am rather certain that each of us have experienced both parts of that verse. We all need words of encouragement and healing from hearts that are caring and kind. But, a deceitful tongue coupled with intent to harm others, does indeed “squeeze” the life from a person - often when a person’s “spirit” is threatened. We need to be “healers,” not harmers!
Prayer: Help us, Lord, to speak words of hope, help and healing from hearts that are clean, kind and caring. May we bless others with the words of Your hope. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Scripture For Today: Proverbs 15:4 The soothing tongue is a tree of life, but a perverse tongue crushes the spirit.