Around the Word in 365 Days, by Linda Sommer

Green Means Go; Red Means Stop

Psalm 52:1-9 I remember my mother teaching me how to obey the traffic signals when I was a child. "Green means go," she would say, "and red means stop." In this passage we see the comparison between red and green. The tongue is red, and it is, as shared earlier, a red carpet we roll out to Satan whenever we allow him to use our tongues. David speaks about the tongue of an evil man and how it devises mischief and even has the power to devour. The end of the evil man who cannot control his tongue is destruction. There is a proverb that says, "Death and life are in the power of the tongue." When we see a red light, we immediately put on the brakes of our car or stop at the curb if we are walking. If we would stop to think before we speak and wait for the green light of the Holy Spirit to lead our conversation, we would be extremely wise.

This psalm goes on to speak of a person who loves the Lord and wants to obey Him in word and deed. He is like a green olive tree in the house of God that trusts in the mercy of God forever and ever. He praises the Lord and waits upon Him. Green is a color used often to represent peace. There is even a movement today called "Green Peace." If we will trust in the Lord with all of our hearts, praise Him and wait upon Him, we will have peace and will be like green olive trees. An olive tree never dies. In the gardens on the Mount of Olives in Israel today, there are olive trees that have sprung from the roots of trees growing during the time of Jesus. Our kind, prayerful, thoughtful words have the power to last forever from generation to generation. On the negative side, our murmuring, complaining and word curses have the power to go on for generations. We forget the power of words to penetrate the airwaves and remain forever. Satan knows this, and this is why he is sometimes called "the Prince and Power of the Air."

Remember, "Red means stop; green means go." The next time you are about to open your mouth, don't roll the red carpet of your tongue out for Satan by speaking unwisely. We are exhorted in the Word to always allow our speech to be seasoned with grace and to only speak those things that edify. We are also told to speak evil of no man. Ask the Holy Spirit to hold your hand today as you cross the streets of this life. You will feel His gentle hand restraining you if the light is not green and you are about to speak something unwise.

Lord, I want to order my conversation aright. I do not want to roll out the red carpet of my tongue to allow Satan to walk into my life. Help me to obey the gentle restraining hand of the Holy Spirit when I am about to say something I should not. I want to keep my soul from troubles. Help me to glorify You with my speech today. Amen.

READ: Numbers 11:24-13:33; Mark 14:22-52; Psalm 52:1-9; Proverbs 11:1-3

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