Controlling Your Tongue

Courtnaye Richard

Inside Out with Courtnaye
Updated Sep 22, 2021
Controlling Your Tongue
We've got to get a good handle on this one, right? Find out how in this week's post.


I would venture to say that this is not an easy thing to do, right? I mean, this can be tough for anyone, especially when you’re hurt, angry, offended, or just have something that you deem necessary to say. Yet, God wants us to control our tongues, especially in moments as I just described. So, let’s talk about how to control this unruly part of our mouths in this week’s post.

Now, before I get started. I want to warn you to brace yourself, because I’m going to probably step on a few toes. But healing is on the way! So don’t go anywhere. Keep reading. The Bible tells us in John 8:32, “You shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.” So I pray that the biblical truths that I share with you in this post will be well received and life-changing. Amen! Okay…now let’s get started.

Controlling a…

Critical Tongue – Are you critical? Maybe a little? Be honest with yourself and God. Because having a critical tongue is deeply rooted in pride – not humility. When we’re overly critical of things or someone, and we’re constantly voicing our opinion or thoughts about everything or everyone pretty often, that’s a sign of having a critical tongue and it needs to be controlled, my sister. Being critical just because you believe a certain thing should be done a certain way or in a certain time frame, or by a particular standard majority of the time can come across as being critical. Constructive criticism (hint: root word) can be good. Yet, the one I’m talking about is the negative side of it.  And if you notice, it’s not very well received. So, don’t be so critical or touchy about everything or everyone. Give people the benefit of the doubt. Lower your expectation and control that tongue, sister. Release the critic in you! You can do it!

Cursing Tongue – Let me start this one off with a Bible verse, instead of you taking my word for it. Colossians 3:8 instructs, “But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.” #filthylanguage Let me give you one more from Ephesians 4:29, “Don’t use foul or abusive language.” This is THE WORD, sis. This is God’s Word to you and me.

I know sometimes people upset you, both inside and outside of the house. They upset you at home, work, in the community, driving, on social media, in conversations, and even at church…BUT God is instructing us to control our tongues by getting rid of it. Why? Simply, because He says so.

Unfortunately, there will be some who, even though they’ve read or heard these verses before, will still somehow find a way to get around it and continue doing it habitually. Trust me. I know, because I have encountered a few (and I pray this won’t be you). The reality is that it’s very disheartening to see professing Christians cursing in everyday conversations or spewed over social media openly or saying, “Excuse my French.” That is not French.

And the thing is, I know it’s hard sometimes when you’re upset or passionate about something, but the Christian response for us is to resist the urge to please the enemy or satisfy the flesh. And when we give into this sinful behavior, it’s direct disobedience to what God is saying through His Word to us as believers.

So I encourage you today, don’t do it, sis. Fight the urge. If this is a struggle for you, ask the Lord to help you release this negative and sinful behavior, and the Holy Spirit will be right there ready to assist. Because here’s the thing, the Lord says, “Get rid of all such things.” This is not a suggestion or encouragement. It is a command. #letsfollowit

Complaining Tongue – Ooooo! Are you guilty of complaining more often than you think you should? Is this a tough one for you? I know this one can be hard to resist. I know it personally. Yet, from experience, I’ve learned that once I’m conscious of it and what the Bible says about it, it happens less and less.

So my advice to you today would be this. Once you know what God’s Word says about it, try yielding to the Holy Spirit when He whispers these words from Philippians 2:14 which says, “Do all things without murmurings and disputings.” (KJV) The New Living Translation puts it this way, “Do everything without complaining and arguing.” This is just the Lord’s way of letting us know that this is not a good practice and we need to stop it in its tracks. Complaining and arguing is like noise in His ears (remember the Israelites) and to others listening around us. It can also cause trouble often times. So let’s be sensitive to moments when we feel the temptation to complain and control it before its unleashed! ;-)

The list could literally go on and on. But I think you get it. We have to control our tongues. God wants us to. The Bible tells us in the book of James just how much damage it can do if it’s not put under subjection (see James 3:1-12). Let me give you just a quick taste of what James 3:6 says, “And the tongue is a flame of fire. It is a whole world of wickedness, corrupting your entire body. It can set your whole life on fire, for it is set on fire by hell itself.” Whoa!

James 3:9-10 also says, “Sometimes it praises our Lord and Father, and sometimes it curses those who have been made in the image of God. And so blessings and cursing come pouring out of the same mouth. Surely, my brothers and sisters, this is not right!”

So let’s get this thing under control, my sister. The Word, combined with the Holy Spirit is able to help us. Ephesians 4:29 tells us, “…Let everything we say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.” And verse 32 says, “…be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.”

Remember, Jesus is coming back soon! And those who endure unto the end shall be saved. So let’s be ready from the Inside Out!

Resource Recommendation: “30 Days to Taming the Tongue: What You Say (and DON’T SAY) will Improve Your Relationships” by Deborah Smith Pegues. She covers a long list of ways to control various types of tongue issues such as a lying tongue, argumentative tongue, belittling tongue, harsh tongue, meddling tongue, boasting tongue, etc. It’s loaded and life-changing! Grab it today!

QUESTION: Do you struggle with controlling your tongue? Do you struggle with being overly critical, cursing, complaining, or some other way as it relates to controlling your tongue? Would you like me to join you in prayer on it? If so, you can state your request here or let me know how this post has helped you here in the comments or email me directly @ TODAY! I look forward to hearing from you and praying for you soon. God bless! ~Courtnaye

Photo credit: ©Getty Images/eurobanks

ALSO, my NEW 8-Week Study Guide and Video Teaching Series from my book, "IDENTIFIED: Knowing Who You Are in Christ & Moving Forward in Your Purpose” is coming soon!!! Stay Tuned! 

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