For whatever is in your heart determines what you say. Matthew 12:34 NLT
“Open your mouth, stick out your tongue, and say, Ah.”
I always wondered why a doctor wanted to look at my tongue. When I go to the doctor now, he rarely touches me . . . only asks a bunch of questions. But no more looking in my ears, checking my reflex, or looking in my mouth.
My curiosity led to research. It seems a doctor can tell quite a few things by looking at my tongue. If my tongue has a white coating or white spots, it could signal thrush, leukoplakia, or oral lichen planus. If it’s red, I might have a vitamin deficiency, scarlet fever, or Kawasaki disease. Should my tongue be black and hairy, I probably have some form of bacteria. And if my tongue has sores or bumps, I may have canker sores or oral cancer or have undergone some form of trauma. Or I’m probably a smoker. The tongue tells, after all.
According to Jesus, the tongue tells more than what physical malady I might have. My tongue says a lot about my spiritual condition. It speaks what’s in my heart. Not the literal organ, but in my emotions, spirit, and attitudes. What’s on the inside will come out through the mouth, and my tongue will help it.
I have a choice. I can let my tongue speak uplifting speech or downgrading information. I can build up or tear down. I can look for the good in others, rather than the bad. I can help them get better or make them bitter. I can spread love, kindness, gentleness, peace, joy, patience, and faithfulness—or I can disseminate the opposite.
Just as a stream or river can’t produce bitter and sweet water—or a grapevine grows grapes and figs—so my tongue should not spew good and evil simultaneously. Unlike the water and the vine, the tongue has the capacity to do both. When it does, it demonstrates inconsistency in my life—a spiritual malady made evident by my tongue. Speaking love to someone’s face but degrading them when they turn away damages my testimony and cast aspersions on the God I serve.
God made the tongue to speak good things, to build up, and to share His message of love. Don’t use yours for anything else. Let your tongue tell who you really are.
Tweetable: What is your tongue telling?
Prayer: Father, tame our tongues so they speak only what uplifts and advances Your Kingdom.