When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent. – Proverbs 10:19

Whoa, Parents! Ever said anything to or about your children only to regret it later? Ever used “many words” on a child who you thought was falsely claiming their “stomach hurt” at bedtime, only to have them throw up all over their room two hours later?

Yep. I have.

I’ve been hearing a lot of messages recently about words. More specifically, about guarding your tongue. I wanted to share this brief passage with you today because I am having to apply it to my internet life right now for a very practical reason.

About a week ago, I simultaneously sliced and jammed the pointer finger on my left hand. Not only did I slice and jam the finger, but I caused enough nerve trauma to create pain that ran all the way down to my elbow. I’ve just recently taken off the splint I was wearing, only to discover that I still can’t really use that finger well. The tip is numb, and when I do something that applies pressure, the nerve pain comes back.

This makes typing very difficult. I can either use the finger and hurt, or I can do laborious, modified typing using only some of the fingers on my left hand. Thus, the prospect of typing out blog posts, emails, and facebook statuses does not excite me like it usually does. I’m not even going to go into detail as to how having a painful finger affects taking care of 4 small children.

I’ll let your imagination run wild with that one.

This misfortune has had the good fortune of encouraging me to think about my words. We are so used to just throwing our opinions and stories at anyone who will listen, that we are not getting as good at filtering, and carefully considering what we say.

In the verse above, the Bible points out that, “Hey. The more words you throw around, the more likely you are to say something harmful, indiscreet, or just plain dumb.”  If we edited our spoken words or our internet posts as well as we would a college term paper or a professional literary piece, I’m sure we would have less to regret in life.

And while there is plenty more to say on the subject, my hand hurts. I know Caroline has written a good piece about waiting to speak until you have something to say. I would encourage you to click over and read it.


Annie Beth Donahue is the founder of Signposts Ministries and the mother of four children, and each of them have special health needs. Annie Beth is a specialist in musical therapy and a talented singer. She and her husband, Brad, live near Charlotte, North Carolina.