My mouth gets me into some serious trouble. One of my biggest problems is opening my mouth before my brain finishes thinking through the situation. Mix in some sarcasm, and you can imagine the issues I get myself in.
I constantly have to think through everything before I say it. Somedays, I’m on my A-Game…others, not so much. Even on my best days, I still struggle with making sure what I am saying it not going to put me in the doghouse. Before I go into a counseling session, a leadership meeting, or discipling a new Christian, I put myself through a mental checklist of 3 Things to Think About Before I Open My Mouth:
1. Think through the situation.
The worst part of my day is when I open my big mouth, & my first thought afterwards is “Why in the world did you just say that?!” Before you enter into any situation, I prepare myself mentally in three ways: Consult, Pray, & Reflect. I consult either my ministry friends or another spiritual leader about the situation & ask for advice; I ask God to give me wisdom & intelligence in the situation; and once the meeting is over, I reflect on what I could have done differently & what was learned from the situation.
2. Make sure what you are saying lines up with scripture.
Always know what you are about to teach, preach, sing, or consult is within God’s Word. I’m sure you still are learning everything you can about theology & doctrine, as I am. Give them the best answer you can give them. If it is something you are not sure about, then let them know. No one likes a know-it-all. In many cases, we give our advice-seekers personal beliefs more than doctrinal fact. There’s nothing wrong with this – as long as scripture would support your personal advice.
3. Say it with Confidence.
Ever meet one of those people who say everything in question form? Know what you are saying is correct, thought through, and you are confident what you are saying is the most trustworthy & valuable piece of advice and/or information you can give them.
I still deal with this on a daily basis. I’m continually learning & growing in this area of life, but it is still a struggle. I would challenge you at your next meeting or counseling sessions to think through the situation, make sure what you are saying is Biblical, and then say it with confidence.
Do you struggle in this area as well? How can we as ministry leaders have better equipped with tongues? Leave your comments below.