Dakota Accent

FROM THE PASTORS DESK

“Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how to respond to each person.”  Colossians 4:6

While recently on vacation in Springfield Missouri, I sat down next to a man and began to visit briefly with him.  I asked him where he was from and it turned out that this was his home territory.  I told him that I was from North Dakota to which he replied, “Yea, I could tell.”  I guess 1 North Dakotan surrounded by 182,000 Missourian’s meant that I was the one with the accent. J  I later wondered to myself, if my North Dakota Red River Valley Accent was detected that quickly by a Missourian, can people detect, through my speech, that I also am a Christian.

The above Scripture passage was given “to the saints and faithful brethren in Christ at Colossae.” They were directed by the apostle Paul “by the will of God” to let their speech always be seasoned with grace.  Were the saints in Christ to let their speech be seasoned with grace just Sunday morning for 63 minutes while at church?  No.  God expects His people to always let their speech be different from that of those who do not have Jesus as Lord and Savior.  People should be able to detect from your speech fairly quickly that words of Scripture and your love for Jesus actually mean something to you.

The apostle Paul tells the saints in Christ what their speech should be like and earlier in his letter he tells them what should not be coming out of their mouths.  “But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth (Colossians 3:8 KJV).”  James, the half-brother of Jesus, also had some God given direction for God’s people as he said, “…but no one can tame the tongue; it is a restless evil and full of deadly poison.  With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of God; from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing.  My brethren, these things ought not be this way (James 3).”

I read here that no one can tame the tongue and I feel a bit defeated, helpless and hopeless in my efforts to curve the stuff that comes out of my mouth.  If no one can tame the tongue, who can?     The only answer is our Maker, God Almighty!  James says to “Submit therefore to God” also to “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you” and “Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord.”  The very God who made my tongue is perfectly and wonderfully able to tame my tongue all to His honor and glory.

Let’s submit our tongues to God and ask Him to tame our tongues.  He will begin to put Proverbs 16:24 on our tongues which states, “Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.”

Pastor Tom

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