When anyone uses a loud or demanding voice when asked a question or just making a statement, my boys will smile and say, “Snap”! It is usually when our patience is running a little low and we have asked them to do something several times and then we resort to a demand with the tone of “you better get this done.” Usually when the boys are trying to get us to calm down over a matter, they smile and use the snap word which usually makes us all laugh and realize it is not worth getting that upset about. They have also used this upon other people they are close to when they see tension rising in the midst frustration.
There are many things in the world that have power. Do not forget to list the tongue as one of the principle ones. We have been told very clearly about the power of the tongue to determine the direction of our lives and our very destinies, and to build up or destroy both others and ourselves. The tongue has great power to create and to build up, and also to destroy. The words that you say are important, extremely important. So also the tongue is a small thing, but what enormous damage it can do. A great forest can be set on fire by one tiny spark and the tongue is a flame of fire. It is full of wickedness and poisons every part of the body. The tongue can turn our whole lives into a blazing flame of destruction and disaster or into a sweet peaceful life.
One of the parenting classes that I taught suggest instead of saying to your child, “This room is so messy or you are so messy, clean this place up you’re a slob!” You should say, “We can organize this room where you can find things so well. You are so good keeping things straight and clean.” We must learn to say what we want and expect not criticize and bring forth fruit of what we are not wanting. If you constantly call your child or spouse a slob, they will continue to be one or become one because you have sown those words into their heads. Words are very powerful!
The tongue is compared to a fire because of how it can start with one small word of gossip or criticism that can turn into a raging fire. One match can result in a great fire that can destroy millions of acres of forest and many homes. One cruel word of gossip or criticism can destroy reputations and lives. The wrong word said at the wrong time can separate chief friends. The tongue can destroy someone else’s life, and it can destroy your own life. James 3:6 says, “It defiles the whole body.” Jesus said a very similar thing in Mark 7:15, “There is nothing from without a man, that entering into him can defile him: but the things which come out of him, those are they which dishonor him.” The things are what you think and what you say.
The root to most problems is the heart. “From the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” People say bitter things when they have bitterness in their hearts. You will not be able to change the words that are said unless first of all you change the heart. “The heart of man is desperately wicked and deceitful above all things. Who can know it?” In all of the world and with all of the behavior problems of mankind, it has to do with a heart problem. Murders, and envying, and adulteries, and gossiping, and cursing all come from the heart of man. To solve these problems the heart must be changed. That’s where the gospel comes in. Only conversion to Jesus Christ can change the heart. Human religion can change the outside of man by giving rules and regulations to follow. Only the Spirit can make alive through faith in Jesus.
If any man desires to live comfortably on earth, or to possess eternal life in heaven, he must bridle his tongue from wicked, abusive, or deceitful words. He must forsake and keep far from evil actions, do all the good he can, and seek peace with all men. For God, all-wise and every where present, watches over the righteous, and takes care of them. None could or should harm those who copied the example of Christ, who is perfect goodness, and did good to others as his followers.
I Peter 3:9 Don’t snap back at those who say unkind things about you. Instead, pray for God’s help for them for we are to be kind to others and God will bless us.
The next time you are ready to “Snap” look upon your heart and see if it is worth it.