Our tongues and blazing fires (James 3:5b-6)

"How great a forest is set ablaze by such a small fire! And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness." - James 3:5b-6

One of the biggest advantages of writing over speaking is you see your words come out and you can erase or delete as you see necessary. Because basically none of you know me in person none of you know just how easily (though you may guess) I can say stupid things and hurt people or just make myself look like a moron.

I think I read through this section of James every time and just think, "Yea everyone knows that, but there's really nothing we can do about it." But today when I read this I realized how far I have come in taming my tongue. Now don't get me wrong, I still have a long ways to go, but there have definitely been some strides in the last few years.

Specifically this last summer I was living with some college students while I was taking some seminary classes and while they were believers I was absolutely shocked at their mouths. Horrifying statement after horrifying statement had me realize just how far I've come, because no doubt just about 4 years ago (just a couple of months before I started dating the woman to become my wife) I was just as bad as any of these guys.

I'm writing this simply to say there is hope. If there is hope for me then there is definitely hope for you. As a person who absolutely lacks the ability to think before he speaks I have to imagine it is only by the grace of God my tongue is causing smaller and smaller fires as I spend more time with more disciplined and weathered believers.

May God give us grace to put a bit in our own mouths, and may we learn to surrender our tongue to Him.