Archive for September, 2008

Taming The Tongue

I’ve been fortunate over the last few weeks to reading the book of James to prepare for a small group study on that book and also to have the Pastor at our church doing a series on the same book.

My wife and I have been struggling for some time now with our son Michael who is 11 years old. His mouth has gotten him into all sorts of trouble lately and despite our best efforts at discipline and lectures, he still wasn’t “getting it.” He’d lose television privileges and video game privileges. He wasn’t allowed to have a friend stay over this weekend because of he was punished. On Saturday morning, his mouth got him into trouble again and he lost a bike ride he was looking forward to. That really upset him and I finally decided that it was time for me to have a talk with him from a biblical perspective.

I read to the third chapter of James to him from the NIV bible and then broke it down for him. He especially understood the point about the bit in the horses mouth and the rudder on a ship. I explained in detail that with just the tone of his voice that his tongue was getting him into trouble. He wasn’t clear on the issue so I told him that when he yells out “What?” in a particular way when we call him, that while he is saying “What” his tone is saying, “Dad, why are you bothering me?” That seemed to surprise him as if he didn’t know. And I probably realized that I had never communicated it that way to him othe than to say, “Don’t say ‘What’ to me like that!”

I prayed with him and asked God to give him the strength to control his tongue and on Sunday he was much better. I had to remind him several times of our conversation. We’ll see how it goes as the days go by, but it was a good start and it reminded me that he can now more easily understand biblical principles and I need to share that with him more and more.


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