Personal instruction from James!

Some people have the inability to say nothing. They feel the need to react with words rather than not react at all.
I think a non-reaction is one of the strongest reactions a person can do.

James offers some great help on what to do in times you feel the need to speak out or react with some action on your part.

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. James 1:5

Pray about it before you say or do anything. Ask God to give you wisdom. The Bible promises He will liberally give it.

Let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God. James 1:19-20

Listen to everything that others have to say and slow down on your reaction. Misunderstandings happen because you miss the understanding. When you begin to think about what you are going to say before someone else has finished what they are saying, then you will not fully understand. Listen first!

Be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. James 1:22

Christians should display Christ in all things. That’s not going to be easy until you can pray and listen!
Years of a good Christian reputation can be scarred deeply by one single outburst. Perhaps it’s time to return to the basic question WWJD – What Would Jesus Do?

If anyone among you thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this one’s religion is useless. James 1:26

When you do speak be in control of what you say. James has already said to be slow to speak. Take your time and think about what you are saying and how it sounds. You are the only one that can control your mouth.

In Chapter 3, James has much more to say about the tongue – about speech. That includes this statement:

Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so. James 3:10

Nothing makes this more obvious than social media.
I’ve seen people post prayer and praising God one moment – the next they are cursing someone. One thing that bothers me is reposting from someone that has an offensive name. It may be an innocent, humorous picture but it’s a repost from “Get The **** Outta Here!” where the **** is an expletive. Blessing and cursing should not be so.

Do not speak evil of one another, brethren. He who speaks evil of a brother and judges his brother, speaks evil of the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge. James 4:11

There are Christians that slip and fall and do ungodly things. There’s no need of stomping someone when they’re down. Again, many have the inability to say nothing.
So I’ll tell you if you can’t think of something good to say just say “I’m praying for you!”

Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.” But now you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. James 4:15-16

James talks about bragging. And he should! It is something I hear all the time and I may be guilty of it myself at times. I try not to be.
Most of the time bragging is self-centered – about your ability to know something or do something. Braggers often butt into a conversation that has nothing to do with them so they can boast of their great knowledge and understanding of the subject.
I’ve discovered the best way to not brag is to say nothing!

James also tells us a few other things that really need no comment from me.

Do not grumble against one another, brethren, lest you be condemned. James 5:9

Above all, my brethren, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or with any other oath. But let your “Yes” be “Yes,” and your “No,” “No,” lest you fall into judgment. James 5:12

Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. James 5:16

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