Don’t Say It! (James 4:11)


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How often during the course of the day we have the occasion to say something damaging about another believer! Perhaps someone who sidles up to us at church and whispers, “What did you think of that sermon?” Or we are asked, “What do you suppose So-and-so is up to now?” Before we know it, we have given voice to malicious, harmful, and unfounded thoughts.

If you have trouble controlling what you say, perhaps this anonymous verse from Poems that Preach will help:

 If an impulse comes to say

Some unthoughted word today

That may drive a friend away,

Don’t say it!

If you’ve heard a word of blame,

Cast upon your neighbor’s name

That may injure his fair fame,

Don’t tell it!

If malicious gossip’s tongue

Some vile slander may have flung

On the head of old or young,

Don’t repeat it!

 Thoughtful, kind, helpful speech,

‘Tis a gift of promise to each –

This the lesson we would teach:

Don’t abuse it!

Truly the tongue “is a fire, a world of iniquity (James 3:6). But James also said that the “wisdom from above” will help us sow peace. With the Holy Spirit’s help we can heed those words: Don’t say it! – David C. Egner

One can easily pick a wise man by the things he doesn’t say.

  • June 16, 1986, Our Daily Bread

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