You’ve probably heard that the strongest muscle in the body is the tongue, right? Well, that isn’t really true. (Sorry if one of the profs at Judson told you that!) The reality is that the strongest muscle in the body is either the heart or one of the jaw muscles according to the science community. They believe that the tongue has been referred to as the strongest muscle in the body because it seemingly never grows tired with all of its daily work.
I actually believe that the tongue is the strongest muscle in the body but not because it doesn’t get tired or because I was taught that as a child. I believe the tongue is the strongest muscle in the body because of its power. On the positive side, the tongue can give encouragement, love, instruction, life and happiness. That’s quite a bit of positive power. On the negative side, the tongue can bring death, destruction, discouragement, hurt, sadness and despair. That’s a lot of harmful power.
Here’s my question for you – have you developed your tongue muscle and trained it to be a powerful instrument of positivity and not harm lately?
You haven’t trained your tongue recently if…
- You find yourself regularly putting your foot in your mouth.
- You find yourself getting angry and saying things that you don’t really mean.
- You recognize that you are a “Debby downer” always bringing up the negative side of a topic.
- You wish you could take back things that you say.
- You catch yourself sharing gossip or confidential matters that you shouldn’t be sharing.
- You boast about yourself on a regular basis.
- You blame God for difficulties in your life.
- You use the Lord’s name in vein and swear without any thought or conviction.
- You are judgmental toward people that aren’t like you.
Be honest, how many of these apply to your life?
Here are the Biblical contrasts, truths and areas where you can begin your training.
- Matthew 12:33-35, “Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit.You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him.”
- Ephesians 4:29, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths,but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”
- Proverbs 13:3, “Those who guard their lipspreserve their lives, but those who speak rashly will come to ruin.”
- James 3:5-8, “Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark.The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.”
The reality is that we can’t train our tongue ourselves. We can certainly be more conscientious and diligent, but it will take the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives to tame this powerful beast. The reality is, as well, that it is a life-long training regiment. I encourage you to take the following practical steps to start your training:
- Be honest in your evaluation of your tongue.
- Pray for help to train and tame it into a tool of encouragement.
- Memorize Bible verses that speak to the areas that you are most in need of training. ‘
While physical training is of some value, this kind of training will cause exponential impact in your spheres of influence. As one author said, “Mightier than the sword the tongue may be, but the tongue is mightiest of all.”
Eric Rojas, Class of ‘90