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When Words Are Many, Sin Is Not Absent…

girl mouth

When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise.  Proverbs 10:19

I have to be honest.  This used to be my LEAST FAVORITE verse in the Bible!

I was always a big-time talker from the time I was little.  Since I was an identical twin, and she was “the quiet one,” I was always talking and telling my sister every single thought that ever entered my head every waking moment as we grew up.

I used to look at that verse and think, “That can’t really be true!  What’s wrong with talking a lot? I’M sure not sinning with all MY talking!”

Then God convicted me of my MOUNTAIN of sin in December 2008.

Suddenly, I realized that almost every word out of my mouth had been one kind of sin or another for most of my life.

YIKES!

I was afraid to talk to anyone for a long time.  I didn’t want all that sin to come out.  So, first I went really quiet.  That is often the first step of this journey – the Quiet Phase.

THE SIN THAT CAME OUT OF MY MOUTH:

  • PRIDE- thinking I always knew best
  • complaining – about anything that wasn’t perfect in my eyes  (Philippians 2:14-16a – God commands us not to complain)
  • arguing – because I was clearly “always right”  (Philippians 2:14-16a – God commands us not to argue)
  • defending myself instead of listening humbly to any criticism (see, Pride above)
  • gossip – I often talked about others in negative ways to make them look bad (That hurts other people greatly and deeply grieves God’s heart)
  • resentment/bitterness/unforgiveness – I rehashed and rehashed and rehashed wrongs people had done to me and cherished my grudges (HUGE sin in God’s eyes.  Jesus says God will not forgive me if I do not forgive others.  Matthew 6)
  • self-righteousness – thinking I was so much “better than” others
  • comparing myself to others
  • insecurity – because I was trying to find security in SELF or in my husband not Christ – I had idols in my soul
  • disrespect – I had NO CLUE what was disrespectful vs. respectful at first
  • control – what I thought was helping was actually often me trying to control other people because I had SELF and trying to control others as an idol in my heart above Christ

LEARNING WISDOM AND DISCRETION:

  • I learned that I needed to filter my thoughts and not allow sinful words out of my mouth.  That was NEW!  And really difficult at first!  At first, I still had all the sinful thoughts in my head, and was just trying not to say them.  I didn’t trust myself to talk because I didn’t have godly wisdom yet!

But, in time, God changed my heart as I took each thought captive.

Eventually, God helped me to stop focusing my thoughts on negative, critical, disrespectful, resentful thoughts.

I learned to use Philippians 4:8 as a filter about what I could and could not think about

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things. Philippians 4:8

If a thought didn’t fall in one of those categories, I had to trash it.  Eventually, as I fed the holy thoughts and starved the sinful thoughts, my mind was renewed and I don’t even usually think the sinful thoughts anymore.  That is what God wants to do with us – A TOTAL HEART CHANGE.

  • God also taught me to examine my true motives and WHY I wanted to say the things I wanted to say.

God cares very much that every single one of my motives be pure and godly.

Some motives I have to watch out for:

– selfishness

– PRIDE, PRIDE, PRIDE

– making myself “look good”

– finding contentment in something other than Christ (idolatry)

– seeking to hurt someone

– to feel loved by a person

– worldliness

– materialism

– greed

– bitterness

– to control others and make them change to do and to be what I want them to do and to be

– seeking attention for myself

– other people’s approval

– avoiding conflict

– trying to “earn” God’s approval

– trying to “be perfect” (I am a wretched sinner with nothing good in my heart on my own – that is impossible and it is idolatry of perfection)

Really, the only motives that are right with God are – to have total faith in Christ, to seek to please, love, obey and honor Christ and to seek to bless and love others with God’s love.

If those are not my motives, I have a big problem with God.

THEN GOD TAUGHT ME TO THINK THINGS AND SAY THINGS THAT GIVE LIFE

It is not enough to get rid of the bad ways of thinking and speaking – we must replace that with godly ways of thinking first, then godly ways of speaking!  I don’t generally talk out loud as much as I used to.  It’s ok for there to be silence at times – not angry silence, but joyful and contented silence.  Every moment does not have to be filled with my words.

I began to make myself learn to think and to say:

– grateful words

– joyful in Christ words

– genuine praise for my husband and others

– respectful words

– kind words

– humble words

– healing words

– words that would bless others and build them up

– gracious words

– words of contentment in Christ

– words of genuine repentance when I sin

In time, these things became a deeply ingrained habit and didn’t feel so foreign and awkward.  NOW – it feels foreign and awkward to say the sinful things!  I don’t like to say them – even in an example.

PRAISE GOD for what He has done in my life!  IT IS ALL HIM!

RESOURCES:

Check out my Youtube channel “April Cassidy” – the links above on “trying to be perfect” and “I had SELF and trying to control others as an idol” are links to two of my Youtube videos.

11 thoughts on “When Words Are Many, Sin Is Not Absent…

  1. “All of the above” are things that I am going to start working on as of today.I too am bad to chime in on conversations that are about someone else or “want to know the scoop” about someone else. Going to make a conscious effort not to do that anymore. Hubby has always said things like “well I think he/she is a good person” or “I like Joe, I think he does a good job” if someone starts talking negatively to him about another person…even if he feels the same way. He hates gossip and hates to hear someone talking badly about another person. He will talk to me honestly about how he feels about that person because he knows it won’t go any further. Even through our personal marriage issues, he hasn’t talked to anyone because he hears how people talk about others and doesn’t trust anyone else not to tell the entire county. We all could learn a ton from this post April.

    1. LTL,

      We are ALL guilty on many of these issues.

      I am so thankful that God is able to change our hearts and minds and empower us to live and think in His ways as we seek Him and desire to obey and please Him above all else.

      It is a process – the process of sanctification. It is a lifelong process of becoming more and more like Jesus. But it is so amazing to not have to regret things we say and to honor God, our husbands and others and to have a clear conscience. That is a total God thing.

      It is my prayer He might empower each of us to live in His victory over sin as we learn to submit to Him as Lord and allow His Spirit to fill us up.

      Much love to you! Thanks for sharing!

  2. How interesting that you have an identical twin, yet you are loquacious and she is quiet. I would have thought that those qualities were more nature than nurture.

    I must admit, I did chuckle when I read your opening sentence. I hope that was your intention. If not, my apologies.

    1. Rick
      Yes! I intended to be funny – I can laugh about it now. 🙂

      My sister decided that it was pointless for us both to talk about our day when we were 4. I didn’t know that for many years, not until we were adults. So she just let me do all the talking – and boy did I do all the talking!

      1. Fascinating. I know how your sister feels. There are times when I can’t get a word in at the dinner table. The competition can be over whelming sometimes (it’s hard to compete with mom). It’s also interesting how we fall into patterns in relationships and once those patterns are set, it’s very difficult to change.

        I like your approach to think about what you are about to say and use the filters you have established. I need to copy your approach.

  3. Thank you for another relative post ! God is mighty! I’m praying daily to die to self and live for Christ! I use too many words each day. I pray to fill my mouth, mind and heart with silent thoughts of joy and contentment in Christ. I pray to think before I speak in each situation ! Thank you ! God bless!

  4. Q: You discuss how we can better embrace introverts in the workplace. Can you explain? A: Introverts thrive in environments that are not overstimulating—surroundings in which they can think (deeply) before they speak. This has many implications. Here are two to consider: (1) Introverts perform best in quiet, private workspaces—but unfortunately we’re trending in precisely the opposite direction, toward open-plan offices. (2) If you want to get the best of all your employees’ brains, don’t simply throw them into a meeting and assume you’re hearing everyone’s ideas. You’re not; you’re hearing from the most vocally assertive people. Ask people to put their ideas in writing before the meeting, and make sure you give everyone time to speak.

My grandmother is on hospice and won't be with us much longer (11-30-16). I will get to comments when I am able to but I need to be with family right now. Thanks for understanding.

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