Why Spirit-Filled Followers Shouldn't Turn Self-Talk Into Trash Talk

(Unsplash/ Volodymyr Hryshchenko)

Have you heard the saying "talking trash"?

Talking trash is a worldwide colloquialism for when a person is insulting or badgering another individual. Talking trash happens readily at sporting events. Boxing weigh-ins and NBA games are the headliners for trash talk.

Talking trash is used to get inside someone's head and throw off their concentration. It does work. It is so effective the devil uses it too. The devil talks trash to Christians.

This is what trash talk from the devil sounds like:

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— "God does not love you."

— "You are a sinner."

— "You know you fail every day."

— "People at that church don't care about you."

— "No one cares about you."

— "If God is with you, why are you suffering like this?"

— "Why are others happy, but you're not?"

Negative Self-Talk

Research has determined that 2/3 of all words we speak to ourselves are negative. Negative self-talk lowers our self-esteem, and our confidence plunders.

We must guard ourselves against this kind of personal attack. On a spiritual level, negative self-talk inhibits our faith, destroys our identity and steals our hope.

Pay close attention to the dialogue going on in your heart and mind.

"Let no unwholesome word proceed out of your mouth, but only that which is good for building up, that it may give grace to the listeners" (Eph. 4:29).

Words build up or tear down. It is imperative that we pay close attention to our words. Words fuel our thoughts and empower our attitude. Words feed our spirits. Words win battles and encourage our faith.

The Power of the Tongue

Notice the power of words! Words possess the power to speak life or death. Words turn our lives in the direction our words create. Words cause us to overcome, stumble and fall. Words empower or disempower us.

"See how we put bits in the mouths of horses that they may obey us, and we control their whole bodies. And observe ships. Though they are so great and are driven by fierce winds, yet they are directed with a very small rudder wherever the captain pleases. Even so, the tongue is a little part of the body and boasts great things" (James 3:3-5a).

The symbolism of the tongue as a rudder and a bridle is eye-opening. A small rudder can turn a battleship. And a tiny bit in a horse's mouth fully controls the horse.

"The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences" (Prov. 18:21, NLT).

Life means to be alive, receive, nourish, preserve, quicken or inspire. Words of life release life.

Words of death (negativity), create chaos and unrest.

Words and Jesus

Words have power.

Jesus used the words of His mouth to calm a storm, raise the dead, curse a fig tree and multiply food.

Then Jesus said to the disciples, "Jesus answered them, "Have faith in God. For truly I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, 'Be removed and be thrown into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you will receive them, and you will have them" (Mark 11:22-24).

Mountains are symbolic of troubles and struggles. When our words are mixed with faith, mountains of fear, doubt and unbelief are removed! Our words have the mountain-moving ability.

Don't Be a Fool

"A fool's lips enter into contention, and his mouth calls for blows. A fool's mouth is his destruction, and his lips are the snare of his soul. The words of a talebearer are like tasty trifles, and they go down into the innermost body" (Prov. 18:6-8, NLT).

It is utter foolishness for us to say everything we think. The Bible says, "Those who open wide their lips fall into destruction." This is where drama begins—in our mouths.

"Put away from you a deceitful mouth, and put perverse lips far from you" (Prov. 4:24, MEV).

Speaking from our emotions leads to continual drama and a roller coaster lifestyle. The up-and-down life leads further down the road of negativity. It is proven when we use negative words it leads to negative thoughts and negative behaviors.

"A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bears what is good, and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bears what is evil. For of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks" (Luke 6:45).

The Bible reveals a connection between the words of our mouth and the thoughts in our hearts. In this way, the mouth is the printer of the heart.

Thomas McDaniels is a husband, pastor, dad and grandfather. He is also a public speaker, author and podcast host. Listen to his podcast, 5-Fold Unplugged, on Charisma Podcast Network. Thomas has written for Church Leaders and currently writes for Charisma Media outlets. Thomas is the founder of lifebridge.tv and the guy behind thomasmcdaniels.com. You can find Thomas on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

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