building on the foundation of Jesus Christ

Two Sides

I started a new study on this particular morning (of this writing). The first lesson was on the mouth. Okay, do we have to start there? I mean, seriously? The study is about having a conversation with God, so yes, it starts with the mouth. The Scripture is from James concerning speaking praises and curses with the same mouth. James point is we can’t have both coming from the same source like there can’t be fresh water and bitter water out of the same spring. I contemplated this point all day. I can’t speak out of both sides of my mouth – so to speak.

The overflow of my heart naturally flows out of my mouth. What is coming out? In the past I know I have had more complaints than praises. Is that still the case? James also says we can’t tame our tongue. It’s the smallest part of our body but it can do a lot of damage. I know I can’t control my tongue. It really does have a mind of its own. It’s only when I submit my tongue to God and let Him control it. Only then am I successful in keeping the words from flowing out in the wrong direction. Poison or praise? Kindness or hurt? Edification or slander? Which will I choose as I go through this day? I am weak, but God is strong. I fail but Jesus has the victory.

I want the fresh water to flow out. I want the Living Water that was poured into my heart, to flow out of it. My focus is the key. My circumstance could keep me from praise, but that’s when I need to be praising more. God is good, even when the circumstance seems to be bad. What’s the worst thing that could happen? Jesus has already overcome the obstacle of death. What on earth could keep me from experiencing His resurrection and not praise Him for it? There’s only one choice to make. Praise Him no matter what. Count it all joy. Yeah, it’s easy to say when I’m on the mountain looking down into the valley. The test will come when I’m walking in the valley. Where’s my focus then? Let my heart continually proclaim the name of Jesus no matter what!

What’s the next lesson going to bring?

With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be. Can both fresh water and bitter water flow from the same spring? My brothers, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water. James 3:9-12


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