The wise man Moses prayed that the Lord would teach us to number our days. In similar fashion, we need to number our words. We will only speak so many of them. God knows the exact number. We do not. But we do know that our tongue will fling only so many words out of our heart. If we would spend our words well, then like a wise bricklayer, we need to know what structure we’re building.
Ephesians 4:29 says, “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.” Now, we too often hear “Let no bad words come out of your mouth.” But that is not what the Apostle Paul said. He said “Let no corrupting words come out. That is, let no worm-words come out that will gnaw away at Zion’s walls.” Stated positively, Paul says to speak words that will build, that will actually bestow and minister grace to others. That’s why you have a tongue.
Your tongue is not an instrument to vent whatever reactions arise within you in response to the difficulties of life. Your tongue is a trowel with which you spread grace upon Living Stones, building up the saints around you. The old ones, the young ones. The strong ones and brittle ones. The ones that you will find in your home. And the ones you will find in your workplace.
Spending your words like little ministers of grace is no easy task. But it is a glorious one and one to which you’re called. You’re not permitted to say, “Oh, this is too hard, I will just take a vow of silence.” No, by God’s grace, resolve to spend your words for Christ and His kingdom. That means trusting God that his kingdom is being built up, loving the bricks, and refusing to fret when you find out that some of them need a little patch work; that’s why God gave you a trowel.