When I give young couples Christian parenting advice, I often tell them they need to help their children understand that by guarding the things they say, they can keep themselves out of a great deal of trouble.
Biblical Basis: “He who guards his mouth and his tongue keeps himself from calamity” (Proverbs 21:23).
Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived, often spoke of the importance of guarding the things we say. Consider:
• “He who guards his lips guards his life, but he who speaks rashly will come to ruin” (Proverbs 13:3).
• “An evil man is trapped by his sinful talk, but a righteous man escapes trouble” (Proverbs 12:13).
• “A fool’s talk brings a rod to his back, but the lips of the wise protect them” (Proverbs 14:3).
Do you want to be as wise as Solomon? One way to imitate him is to guard what you say!
~ Shortcut to Understanding ~
Free free to share this story with your child:
The story is told of a young man during the Middle Ages who went to a wise man, saying, “I’ve sinned by saying some bad things about someone. What can I do to take back what I said and undo the damage of my words?”
The wise man replied, “Put a feather on the doorstep of every person you have hurt by your words.”
The young man did it. He then returned to the wise man, wondering if there was anything else he should do.
The wise man said, “Go back and pick up all the feathers.”
The young man replied, “That’s impossible! By now the wind will have blown them all over town!”
Said the wise man, “So have your hurtful words become impossible to retrieve.”
This story illustrates that it is better to think before speaking, because once we’ve done damage with our words, it’s hard to undo the damage.
We should put a “guard” at our mouth to make sure nothing bad “escapes” from it.
It takes time to teach kids this lesson. But be persistent. It will be worth it!
— Dr. Ron Rhodes