Here is my dilemma: I want to be more like Jesus, but I am having a hard time doing it. I know, I know, story of my life. I just am having a hard time taming that dastardly little bastard that lives in my mouth. James was right when he wrote, “So the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great things. […] The tongue is set among our members staining the whole body , setting on fire the entire course of life, and set on fire by hell. […] but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil full of deadly poison” (3:5-8, really read 3:1-12). See, I have this thing I do where I talk about people, trying to “work things out” or “vent” or whatever, but it ends up just being gossip. I am not sure how to stop doing this. I am thinking about taking a week long vow of silence at some time during the summer, which for those of you who know me, would be as close to death in life as I could possibly come. This is all prompted by some things that happen yesterday. This person that I consider a friend, well, a friend I hold at a distance anyway, decided to tell some of my other friend that I was bragging about my grades. That is simply not true. I don’t talk about grades unless I am asked, and even then, I am not necessarily pleased to talk about them. I also think grades are fascist and they don’t mean much to me, so I unless I completely lost my senses, I didn’t “shove the grades” in this person’s face. However, what I did do was talk about this friend with another friend, saying that I couldn’t trust, etc. So really, what I did was the exact thing this person did to me, only I felt justifies in doing it because I was “venting.” Seriously, we can just rationalize anything can’t we?!? I mean, I know I can, but my damned tongue just won’t do what I tell it to. See another justification. I told it to talk. I didn’t even balk at it. I can say that woman is not who I want to be. James continues: “From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My [friends], these things ought not be so!” (3:10). From my same mouth come blessing and cursing. I bless God everyday, and then I curse people from the same mouth. Sometimes I do this within minutes. It’s really schizophrenic, this disjunction of the tongue. I need to work on it. I do. Daily. Sometimes are just really bad. Yesterday was one of those days. Today is going to be better.
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