April 25, 2022

The Best of the Portals of Prayer

Read: James 3

“Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth, keep watch over the door of my lips!”
Psalm 141:3

Small, but Mighty

When God gave man the power of speech, He entrusted him with something that may bring life or death. An angry word may kill a friendship. An uncharitable remark may send someone into the depths of depression. A bit of gossip may ruin a promising career. The psalmist, therefore, prays that God may set a sentinel at his mouth who will carefully examine every word before allowing it to pass over his lips. Conscious of his sinfulness, he feels that he cannot master his tongue with God’s watchful care;
but more is needed. The poet William Cowper calls the tongue “the interpreter of thought”. It reveals what is in the heart. We, therefore, need to add another prayer of the same psalmist: “create in me a clean heart O God, and renew a right spirit within me” [Psalm 51:10].
What a blessing the tongue may then be. The prophet writes: “The Lord has given me the tongue of those who are taught, that I may know how to sustain with a word him who is weary” [Isaiah 50:4]. A word telling of a Savior who died for us may bring spiritual life to one who is living in the shadows of death. Andrew said to his brother Peter: “we have found the Messiah” [John 1:41]. And so, he, by the grace of God, set into motion a chain reaction of conversions that have continued to the present day.

April 25, 1952

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