Christ Honoring Words
While impossible to master this side of heaven, God calls us to give special attention to replacing our errant and superfluous words with Christ-honoring words that make a good and godly difference (Ephesians 4:29). While this requires restraint and thoughtfulness, the primary focus of this command is not some regular strategic planning for our upcoming conversations. Scripture’s concern goes much deeper. Jesus said, “out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45). Proverbs 10:11 tells us, “The mouth of the righteous is a fountain of life.” Inversely, Jesus asks, “How can you speak what is good, when you are evil?” (Matthew12:34).
The key to a renewed vocabulary and more edifying talk is a renewed heart which is growing daily in righteousness. If our hearts aren’t advancing in Christ and our minds aren’t increasingly saturated with the truths of God’s word, then there is little hope that our words will improve. This is why the command to “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly” necessarily proceeds the call to speak to one another “with wisdom,” to engage our mouths “with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs” and to be known as one who regularly expresses “thankfulness” (Colossians 3:16-17).
So the next time it is revealed that your words need to be amended or reformed, find your way quickly to spend time communing with God and ingesting more of his heart-transforming word.