When he was insulted, he did not insult in return. (1 Peter 2:23)
Pastor John’s Notes:
We live in a world bathed in verbal abuse. From the news media to sitcoms to endless twitter feeds, the modern media is saturated with attitudes and language that demeans everyone. I remember watching a sitcom where the entire half-hour show was composed of nothing but people insulting one another. Laugh tracks fabricated the idea that it was funny, when in truth, there was nothing funny about it. I felt polluted.
As followers of Jesus Christ, we are to live as agents of the kingdom of God and to serve as examples of a better life to the people around us. Part of this witness is that we must control our tongues. It is easy to return insult for insult, but in doing so, we only diminish ourselves. It is hard to refrain and even harder to return kindness, but this is the way of Jesus Christ.
Controlling our tongue puts us in a position of power. It is like having a horse’s bridle in your hands or controlling the rudder of a ship. Such self-control is a gift of the Holy Spirit and steers us to a life of confidence and peace. We may not be able to control the circumstances in which we live or the people we encounter, but we can control our responses.
Lord Jesus Christ, thank you for the example you have set before me of perfect control of the tongue. Teach me this day, even in common conversation, to be self-controlled. Let kindness rather than bitterness be my response.