James 3: thoughts… part 1

Read James 3

If anyone does not stumble in what he says,
he is a mature man who is also able to control his whole body.
James 3:2
HCSB
Mature… defined as… anyone who does not stumble in what he says… the one without shoelaces hanging down past the chin… a sign of the spiritually mature…
Again… just this week… my mouth… revealing my level of growth… or lack of… again… reminded how far I have to go… how immature…
Yet… there is another element… something big… the control of the tongue… words… connected with control of the whole…
… a mature man… is also able
to control his whole body…
Words… associated with the control of the whole body…
Many sins deal directly with our wordsliesflatterygossipslandercursingcriticizingcomplaining
But… could it be… self-discipline of the mouth… leads to overcoming other sins… temptations…?
Dealing with our sins of the tongue… the key to overcoming all other temptations… 
With what do you struggle…? 
food…?
shopping…?
selfishness…?
laziness…?
complacency…?
procrastination…? 
control…?
addictions…? 
greed…?
_(fill in the blank)_ ….?
Wholeness… maturity… in Christ… starts with our words…
“…The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.” —Jesus
Luke 6:45
This past weekend… one of woes… and joys… a verse came to mind… a Word for the weekend with family… a calling to watch my words…
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths,
but only such as is good for building up,
as fits the occasion,
that it may give grace to those who hear.
Ephesians 4:29
ESV
(my emphasis)
Our words… are to give grace… and words of grace… reflect… the heart of Christ… beginning with our words… we grow… mature… into Him… and the rest of the body… follows…
Lord Jesus… guard my mouth… truly make me quick to hear… slow to speak… I do not want to speak on my own… I only want to speak… and do… what glorifies You…

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