Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Idle Words

"But I tell you that every careless (idle) word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”  Matthew 12:36-37

WHOA! Every?!

2 Timothy 2:16 tells us to avoid idle chatter because it will lead to ungodliness.  

 Idle talk is defined as of no real worth, importance, or significance. I had always been of the mindset that sins of the tongue were the obvious ones....cursing, lying, gossiping..things that were inherently bad. But idle talk...that seems like it's not necessarily saying BAD things...just insignificant things. Wow.

See...I am not a fan of awkward silence. So what do I do to fill the silence? Ramble. I mean nonsensical, who gives a flip, I should have shut up 10 minutes ago rambling. Ouch. I began to wonder why this would be considered bad. And then it hit me.

When I say things without thinking about them first, that's generally when I look back later and regret what I have said. That's when I let something slip that I shouldn't have. When I don't stop to consider my words, I make unwise choices with what I say. I am careless with my words. Which is dangerous.

This has happened to me many times....most recently one Sunday night at church. I said something to a sweet couple at church just off the cuff. It was thoughtless and dumb and uncalled for. I left after church and headed to the beach. The whole week of vacation I was fretting over the one stupid comment I made. I  enjoyed my vacation, but I still had that feeling of dread in the back of my head the whole time. As soon as we got back the next week, I apologized and felt so much better.

But what heartache could I have saved had I not resorted to idle chatter. Let's think before we speak! I saw a great acronym that I am determined to try to put in to practice....THINK
T...Is it true?
H...Is it helpful?
I....Is it inspiring?
N....Is it necessary?
K....Is it kind?

If not...let's not say it!! Do any of you struggle with this? What helps keep you from idle chatter?