Friday, April 4, 2008

James 1: 26

"If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he decieves himself and his religion is worthless."
James 1: 26

OUCH! This is one of those verses we read every once in awhile, remember how hard it hits, and try to smile through the pain as we quickly jump to verse 27 where we can feel good about serving orphans and widows! However, this verse really needs to be brought home ~ straight to our hearts. How often have you seen it in someone else? The person on the road with a Christian bumper sticker or symbol on their car who cuts people off while obviously calling them names.... Or how about the person at the office who is constantly complaining about anything and everything but makes it a point to let everyone know they're a faithful church-goer (and usually shares their opinion on anything anyone is doing, too).... Maybe it's the person who thinks off-color jokes are funny and okay to tell no matter how far over the line they step...Or maybe it's the person in ministry or on the leadership team who thinks the best way to pray for someone is by getting every juicy, er, um, necessary detail about each and every prayer request, and sees to it that they get as many people praying by sharing the requests ~ and the details ~ with whomever they see.... Now, take it a step often do you see these things in yourself? I know I am duly convicted on many fronts about the rein I have (or don't have) on my tongue at times. What is God trying to say to you? Is there something you need to confess?

Thankfully God CAN change a surrendered life, and we can ask forgiveness from Him knowing it is given freely and fully. We can also ask forgiveness from, and make amends with, those we have wronged. All in the power and grace of Christ. Take some time today and ask God to open your ears to what He wants you to hear in yourself....
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