Proverbs 15:22-23 I pray almost every morning, “Lord, put me in the right place at the right time.” As I read this proverb, I now want to add to that prayer, “Lord, help me to speak the right thing at the right time.” There is a time to speak and a time to keep silent.
Often the enemy gives us critical, judgmental thoughts about our mates and other people. Satan would love nothing better than for us to speak those thoughts out loud. Over my forty years of married life I have learned the voice of the enemy. When he gives me negative thoughts about my husband or about anyone, I always say, “Satan, if you think I’m going to give voice to your thoughts, you have got another think coming.” I often share with people that if I had spoken all the thoughts the enemy planted in my mind to say to my mate, I would not be married today.
You have heard the expression, “You need to speak your mind.” If we spoke our minds all the time, we would probably have a miserable life with no friends. Before I speak, I give what I want to say the “Think Test.” The “Think Test” is found in Philippians 4:8, where Paul lists the things we are to think about:
Whatever things are true
Whatever things are honest
Whatever things are just
Whatever things are pure
Whatever things are lovely
Whatever things are of a good report
Whatever things are praiseworthy
Whatever things are virtuous
Before I speak I ask myself if what I am about to speak true, honest, just, pure, lovely, of a good report, praiseworthy and virtuous. If the words I am about to speak do not pass the “Think Test,” then I do not say those words. You have heard the expression, “You need to count to ten before you speak.” There are eight things listed in the “Think Test,” and we can add two more—whatever things will edify and whatever things are gracious. Now we have our ten things to think about as we count to ten before we speak. You will find if you do this faithfully, you will be a person of few words, but the words you speak will have an impact on people that could change their lives. After all, we do have the words of life. Why should we waste our time speaking the words of death that Satan wants us to speak?
Lord, help my speech today to be seasoned with the things that are true, honest, just, pure, lovely, of good report, praiseworthy, virtuous, edifying and gracious.
READ: 1 Samuel 26:1-28:25; John 11:1-53; Psalm 117:1-2; Proverbs 15:22-23