5 So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great exploits.
How great a forest is set ablaze by a small fire! 6 And the tongue is a fire. The tongue is placed among our members as a world of iniquity; it stains the whole body, sets on fire the cycle of nature,[a] and is itself set on fire by hell.[b] 7 For every species of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by the human species, 8 but no one can tame the tongue—a restless evil, full of deadly poison. 9 With it we bless the Lord and Father, and with it we curse those who are made in the likeness of God. 10 From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers and sisters,[c] this ought not to be so.
I occasionally get engaged in one of those informal exchanges where one person asks: “How are you doing?” And the response comes: “I’m not complaining. No one listens anyway.”
I have said that last line as many times as I have heard it, but the first part of that last line is not always true. I do complain about things — often. The traffic is too slow. I complain. The weather is too dry (or we’ve had too much rain.) I complain. So and so didn’t treat me right…. I complain. I can choose to fill my days with complaining. But is that a good use of my time?
In James we find that from the same mouth comes blessing and cursing. Maybe if I blessed more than complained, there would be something good for people to listen to.
God, help me to find something this hour that I can sing Your blessings for. And help these blessings to drown out my complaints. Amen.