This Should Have Us All Talking

Gwen Smith Blog, Devotions, Wisdom 61 Comments

I’ve heard it said, “If you don’t know your purpose, you will be distracted by the voices.” The same principle applies to the purpose of our words. The Bible has a lot to say about the ways we should use our words.

To ENCOURAGE – “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” (Ephesians 4:29)

To WORSHIP – “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.” (Psalm 103:1-5)

“May my lips overflow with praise, for you teach me your decrees. May my tongue sing of your word, for all your commands are righteous.” (Psalm 119:171-172)

To TEACH – “She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue.” (Proverbs 31:26)

To PROTECT – “Those who guard their mouths and their tongues keep themselves from calamity.” (Proverbs 21:23)

To CONNECT – “Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” (Colossians 4:6)

To CALM – “Without wood a fire goes out; without a gossip a quarrel dies down.” (Proverbs 26:20)

“Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and always to be gentle toward everyone.” (Titus 3:1)

“A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. The tongue of the wise adorns knowledge, but the mouth of the fool gushes folly.” (Proverbs 15:1)

A tongue that is led by the flesh falls easily into speaking destruction, corruption, or gossip. A tongue that takes its cues from the leading of the Holy Spirit does not. Period.

The prophet Isaiah recognized the importance of his words. “The Sovereign Lord has given me a well-instructed tongue, to know the word that sustains the weary.” (Isaiah 50:4) I read this and begin to ask God for a well-instructed tongue.

Recognizing his personal limitations but God’s limitlessness, Isaiah also wrote this, “Because the Sovereign Lord helps me, I will not be disgraced. Therefore have I set my face like flint, and I know I will not be put to shame.” (Isaiah 50:7)

Oh, how I wish I had this perfected.

But I don’t.

My words still put me to shame sometimes.

It is only by the grace of God that I can speak in ways that honor God. Because, just like Isaiah, He helps me.

Without God’s intervention my sparky emotions can become a destructive force just looking for a place to happen. Especially with my family. But, thankfully, God helps me when I call to Him. And when I go off track, He convicts me… reminds me that I am His… that His Spirit is within me, and that His plan for me is greater. And He forgives. (Thank you, Jesus!)

I am challenged and changed by the love of Christ.

My words should be too.

Scripture points us to speak in ways that honor Christ, reflect His grace, echo His love, build others up and make much of Him. Paul encouraged the believers in Ephesus to, “…walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called.” (Ephesians 4:1) Today let’s determine to TALK in a way worthy of our calling.


Dear Lord,
Please help me choose my words wisely today. Instruct my tongue.
Lead me to build others up and to worship You continually.
Keep me from causing harm to others.

In Jesus’s Name I pray, Amen.



Consider Psalm 19:14, “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.” What ONE practical thing can you do today to move your tongue and heart in this direction? Share your “one thing” on the wall of my blog.

I can’t wait to hear your answers!

Thanks for doing life with me. I love you guys so much!



PERSONAL UPDATE: Thanks for all of your prayers. As you probably know, my family and I have been displaced since our home got struck by lightning and caught fire in March. I’m happy to report that we were able to move back into our re-built home this past weekend! AND… I’m exhausted and up to my eyeballs in boxes… but grateful to be home. So grateful. Again, thanks for your prayers. God has shown Himself faithful, once again, to allow beauty to rise from ashes.






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Comments 61

  1. This was a really good word. Lately with the stress of living with my mother in law and being away from my family back in Australia has gotten to me and i have been taking it out on my husband with my words and resentment. The year i moved here from Australia, we got married and his dad passed away a fee months later then thr following year we had to take in his motber in law. It has been a rough few years and i need to better learn to control my tongue and especially my emotions so as to not say anything i regret or bring my husband down.

  2. When we choose to be quiet in the moments when hurtful words are threatening to be heard, choose also to use that moment of silence to pray. Praying to God in those moments allows Him to provide encouraging and positive words to fill the space between us and what has so upset us.

  3. This was much needed for today. I have someone that is trying to destroy me by her destructive words about me to a lot of people. I know that I’m called to pray for her and to have a spirit filled attitude that my words my encourage and uplift our Savior. This is so hard for me right now,

  4. Pray it: Let the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable to You, O Lord my strength and [Christ Jesus] my Redeemer.

  5. S.B.O.P…..I will Stop Breath Observe and Proceed Why? Because I was all of my actions to be acceptable in Gods sight. I have been watching what I let into my Spirit; careful not to let unhealthy things penetrate. I have to increase my prayer life!

  6. Spend every moment I can in His Word. The Word. So that it is wjat flows more naturally. I really needed to read this. Lately I have been letting my emotions get the better of my mouth. But fortunately as you said-

    “And when I go off track, God convicts me… reminds me that I am His… that His Spirit is within me, and that His plan for me is greater. And He forgives. (Thank you, Jesus!)”

    Thank you for sharing. 😁

  7. I too am looking after my 96 year old dad who has just come out of hospital. Emotional stress can cause us to react in ways we shouldn’t. So important to let go of things that don’t matter ,be still and allow God to show you one small thing you can do that will make the day more pleasant for him., read to him, put on a CD and listen to his favourite songs above all find ways to enjoy whatever time you may have together. God will give you what you need, take time to listen. Praying for you x

  8. Remind myself daily to be impeccable with every word that proceeds from my mouth. To honor and respect others for who they are, just as you would like to be treated. Truly value all people and be the hands, feet and mouth of The Lord.

  9. To make the Lord our very ‘first-thing’ desire of our hearts as Dr. Larry Crabb speaks of in his book “Soul Talk”!

    To always be reciting the Holy Scriptures in our heart! And to always remember our brothers and sisters in prayer day and night!

    “3 I thank God, whom I serve with a pure conscience, as my forefathers did, as without ceasing I remember you in my prayers night and day,”
    II Timothy 1:3 (NKJV)

    “2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord , And in His law he meditates day and night.”
    Psalms 1:2 (NKJV)

  10. James 3:5-12
    “5 Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things. See how great a forest a little fire kindles! And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire by hell. For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind. But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so. Does a spring send forth fresh water and bitter from the same opening? Can a fig tree, my brethren, bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Thus no spring yields both salt water and fresh.”

    Yes sister, Amen!

  11. Prays up, stay strong & remember GOD has your back, things might be a little rough right know, but its gonna get better as long as you keep trying & keep the FAITH. Im here to tell you ive been thru it all, but today things are 100 times better, just continue to hang on & don’t give up, TRUST ME IT GETS BETTER!!!! Have a Blessed Day!!!

  12. The one thing i can and will do today, is speak to & treat people the way the way i want to be spoken to and treated & thats with respect. All i ask of anyone is to give me what i give you: RESPECT!!! Just imagine if we could all TALK & TREAT EACH OTHER with RESPECT all the TIME: THIS WOULD BE SUCH A AWESOME WORLD in which WE LIVE!!!! EVERYONE HAVE A BLESSED DAY!!!

  13. Steadily Keep Him On My Heart And Mind. I’m Homeless Right Now And Someone Is Giving Me A Room To Stay In And Its Extra Hard For Me For These People Are Not Religious..Please Pray For My Strength At This Time.♡♡

    1. Post
  14. Praise God u are back in your home May each boxe u open offer a warm “welcome home” that fills ur heart with joy. Married 35 years, my husband is in Manopause, he is angry, angry. Angry at everything. Hard to allow him to be so angry at me without responding the same. I pray God guides my words and my words flow with loving compassion.

  15. I will resolve to stop and whisper a prayer in my heart before I speak ill of anyone. The temptation is great especially this week. Thank you for the timely words.

  16. Thank You for your words, helpful words this morning,. I had 6 months ago a heart episode, and being a believer I had a wonderful peace during this time and since.
    I claimed a few verses of Scripture that were very real to me and helped me come to grips with the life changing diagnosis. Our words are more powerful than we want to believe, so we need to be careful…..I could of questioned God at this time but instead, I understood who I was before Him….A servant, a witness for my God. So the words that I spoke to nurses and Doctors were ones that pointed to the Great Physican,
    Phil 4:8 came to my mind in the middle of the first night in hospital, at first I wasn’t sure why the Holy Spirit had remindered me of these words, but after listening to conversations that when on around me, it become clear….Focus my Children on what you know to be true, Noble, pure, lovely, admirable, in other words , Focus on Me your Heavenly Father, who has all things under His control… Those words were what I was to lean on during this part of my continued ” under construction” moment.
    So in a round about way ….. to say, we need to spend much time in studying, reading ,
    so our minds and hearts are saturated with God’s. Word. As it is said what goes in comes out…if we fill ourselves with whatever is true, Noble, right, pure, lovely, excellent, admirable. In other words God’s truths……then these are the things that will come out…

  17. Give someone a compliment this morning. Instead of gossip or judging type words. Genuinely think of something you love about that person. I think that will help to start the day off in a positive way. Thank you Lord for this day!
    Loved this lesson Gwen! 😊💛

  18. Thanks for sharing! I will try to think before for a longer period of time before responding to others. I need prayer not to let peoples words quicken my temper.

  19. I plan to print these scriptures of wisdom and hang them around the house to bring them to life for my family, and to create a more peaceful atmosphere of God’s love and grace. 🙂

    1. Knowing Jesus hears every word or thought I utter keeps my words kind and gentle.
      Sorry, I typed my first response way to early… lol.

  20. Thank you. Reading this today comes at perfect timing, as I find all of God’s messages do. I have a feeling that today at work will be difficult. Your devotional, and the comments from other women, remind me that I have otherworldly tools at my disposal to retain my composure, to respond appropriately and with respect, to remain patient and kind and calm, to not engage, and at times to hold my tongue and not respond at all. I love the reminders to Pause when agitated and before speaking. Today has the potential to be long and stressful. After reading, I feel much better equipped to face the day. Thanks you.

  21. My one thing today will be not to complain. It’s sign that I want to control instead of trusting God. It’s not about “me” and when I step off the throne I allow Him total rule to do as He pleases and desires.

  22. Pause….After a moment of reflection you may realise that you can share a message differently. This morning when responding to a student about a late assignment, I had to pause. I was concerned that my message was not student friendly. I stepped away from the computer, completed some other task, then returned with an encouraging word for the student.

  23. I think one of the things that I can do to move my tongue and heart in the right direction is remember to not forget my purpose. So that I don’t get distracted by the noise in this world, I need to stay in the Word, let it me my constant companion. Then, out of my heart will flow words of life, love, encouragement and Jesus. Thank you for this timely blog (I read it on 🙂

  24. One thing I can do is to focus on my internal body temp and/or heart rate to make sure I am in check. Even quoting scripture can be tricky depending on the situation. I participated in a Bible study led by Kelly Minter.. She said make sure the words that you use are to benefit someone else rather than yourself. 💕

  25. Thank you Ma’am for your spiritual post this morning. I hardly ever get to your post because other healthy readings. I really dig this one, because I have a big mouth, always have. I have been in recovery 27 years and (Thank God) I’m just learning to ask God to shut my mouth. My God, I think I know everything, (lol, yes sometimes l have to laugh or I’ll be crying, so don’t mind me) just because I’ve been on the streets & now living straight. I usually offend people with my brashness: I just shoot straight from the mouth, don’t cut no corners ( I just vomit it out with no kindness, I rarely cuss now, that’s a plus 4 Jesus) but the way the words of my mouth is said, it has people backing away from me. I pray & asks God to bridle my tongue and then I forget (don’t let me hear, something I don’t like, lol) I ask for The Holy Spirit guidance and do my own thing. I’m sick of it myself, so instead of speaking, I’m biting down on my lips, telling me to hush and just listen. Lol Pray for me please. I’m not going to give up, know the stupid devil is still trying to bring me back to his fold, but his mistake was letting me ask Jesus for help, that little second I asked. Glory to God, He changed me but I know I still need more work.

  26. When I am about to slip into a pit of complaining, I need to replace it with praise and be reminded everything is working out for my good!

  27. If I can just PAUSE! P-Pray for the Holy Spirit’s love, A-Ask questions, that’s what Jesus did. U-Understand by listening well, S-Speak gentle words with love. E-Encourage, especially with the Word. Eph 4:29. Thanks for the reminder!

  28. One way I can move my heart and tongue in the right direction is to listen think before I speak. Evaluate how my words are going to come out, positive or negative.

  29. I feel the one thing that will help me is to listen to the spirit when He tries to guide me away from speaking things that are not God honoring.

    1. The one thing I can do today to move my tongue and heart in the right direction is to learn scriptures especially ones that encourage. I needed this reminder thank you

  30. Gwen, thank you for your teachings today. I feel this hits home this past week, my 96 year old father just got out of rehab a week ago and still is getting all his strengh back to his normal. I became impatient with him when trying to take a sample of blood to know how his blood sugar is doing. I tried multiple times and could not get enough blood to test. Then my brother tried who had no patients and when he couldn’t get any blood my dad was telling both of us off. I made a comment that if he doesn’t want us to test it for him I will put him in a nursing home. Once I made that comment my brother kept saying he was going to a home nursing home. I should never of said that to him, I was convicted when I drove home that night. Since I am his caretaker during the day, once I returned in the morning, I asked him for forgiveness. I still feel the hurt I caused him. Right now he doesn’t feel he should live, that breaks my heart. Words hurt so deeply, once said you can’t take is back.

  31. I definitely needed this powerful message this morning as we prepare to attend our daughter’s high school softball state tournament. I pray this passage guides me to be uplifting and positive towards my precious daughter. Thank you God for your forgiveness and guidance..

  32. I think The Lord is definitely telling me something, three online devotions, 3 similar studies,,,,, for me, pray before I leave home about my words and think before I speak them,,,, thank you Gwen for your teaching

  33. Hi Gwen! I Praise God that you are once again in your home. Thank you Lord!

    I’m in the process of writing a bible study for our Alaska Lutheran Women’s Retreat this weekend. I’ve also been asked to lead the devotion on Friday evening. Today’s devotional is perfect! Not only does it speak to my heart, I’m sure it will speak to theirs. THANK YOU!!!

  34. Thank yo so ever much for that meditation this morning.
    This has been area that I have struggled with and today I will choose to live in the power of His truth and be intentional with how I speak to my precious daughters and those around me.

  35. I so needed this . I woke up at 445am and the lord put on my heart to get up and read and I fell back to sleep- this was such a confirmation for me to really listen more and talk less , which I am getting better at but not quite there and I feel i upset the apple cart way more than I should- thanks for this reading I will be more and more decserning now with my mouth and words and speaking – God Bless

  36. My “one thing” to move my heart and tongue in the right direction is to forgive my cousins! I recently went to the 100th birthday party for my uncle where all my cousins on that side of the family were present, some I hadn’t seen since I was a child. There was a “great divide” inherently there–cultural, political, spiritual–to the point of my being left out of some things, which offended me. I had decided to forgive and pray for them all, but on Sunday I found myself expressing my anger and disappointment to close family members. This revealed that my lack of forgiveness and anger were very much present in my heart. So pray I will truly forgive my cousins and truly love them all with Christ’s love and that I will continue to pray for their salvation (we’re ALL getting old!)

  37. I am getting to that place in my life where I am quick to listen but slow to speak because he that keeps his tongue keeps his life also that’s the place I am striving for

  38. All good responses thank you very much! I can do this with some people and some others it’s difficult because my heart is not in the right place. My heart, trust and eyes need to be focused on the Lord! This is what I always need to bring things back to … “do I trust Him?” Most often very difficult❤️

  39. pause before I speak, and reflect if what I am to say is lifting up (from God) tearing down(from the devil)… I want to share words from God.. thank you for the reminder

  40. Thanks so very much for the reminders. I so needed that message today. I copied 5 of those verses and posted them right next to where I pray every morning as a constant reminder to guard my words.
    So happy for you that you have been able to move back into your home. Praises!

  41. One thing I can do to move my tongue and heart in the right direction is to be careful of what I put in my mind, what I listen to and look at.

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