I could hear the shrill sound coming from the dentist’s drill as it headed straight for my mouth. Out of fear and shear panic, I started waving my hand and attempted to cry out the first words to leap to my mind… Stop! Doc, you're killing me! My slurred speech and limited vocabulary only left me more frustrated. I began to tense up after realizing that I had absolutely no control over my lifeless, numb tongue. That cunning, skillful dentist had successfully paralyzed my tongue without even telling me what he was doing. I had tasted the swab filled with minty topical solution and saw that it was followed by what seemed to be an 8 foot long needle. What came next was a sudden desire to pass out and hit the floor! I’ve always been a little drama queen. Surprised?
For the first time in my life, my love for talking had been greatly prohibited. How would I ever survive without being able to jibber jabber or more importantly chew food for another several hours?! Checking to see if all my teeth were still in tact, I moved my tongue around in a circular motion and made sure that my head had indeed not been violently ripped off.
My aching, throbbing mouth craved the taste of an unsweet tea with Splenda and my growling, empty stomach yearned and cried out for a spoon of crunchy peanut butter and half a sleeve of white chocolate covered Oreo cookies. For so long I had underestimated the true power of my tongue…..
Fun Facts About Your Tongue:
- The blue whale has the largest tongue. It is the size of an elephant and weighs in at a whopping 5,400 pounds
- One taste bud has 50-100 taste cells. No single cell an identify both sweet and bitter.
- The tongue is the strongest and most flexible muscle in the body and is only attached at one end.
- Almost half of the bacteria in your mouth lives on your tongue. (Yuckety yuck!)
- Your tongue never stops working. (My husband will confirm that one) Even in your sleep it is pushing saliva in your throat.
- 85% of the population can curl their tongue into the shape of a tube and I am one of them!
Death and life are in the power of the tongue… ~Proverbs 18:21
I ain’t gonna lie, this ole girl has never been a fan of the retort, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” As a matter of fact, I can share with you times in my life where words just about KILLED me! I know all to well about the sting from the cruel words uttered from someone’s tongue that in turn left me paralyzed, numbed and feeling rejected and completely hopeless.
At the same time, I shamefully admit that there have been times in my past when I spewed out words and later regretted and wished that I could have taken them all back. We all have been there. Words said out of haste when you were filled with fear, frustrated, stressed out, hungry or just plain tired.
I’m talking about bitter words that held your spouse, child, family member, friend or an innocent bystander captive. The kind of cruel words that maybe you spoke in retaliation, or words that came in the form of gossip, boasting and even lying.
Just being candid, looking back, often times my words were merely a way to disguise my own personal hurts and insecurities and a selfish way to hide my broken spirit. I can tell you that although they were not curse words or vulgar language, my words were not at all pleasing to God.
…Be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to anger. ~James 1:19
Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones. ~Proverbs 16:24
I don’t know about you, but I love it when someone believes in me. It does my heart good when someone offers me an encouraging word or affirms me in a certain area. The kind of person that makes you think you can accomplish anything. Someone who will lift me up and speak words of life into my critical crisis situation, a friend that will offer me hope when I feel like I just can’t carry on. You see, that my friend is the kind of person that GOD has called all of us to be.
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. ~Ephesians 4:29
Let My Words Speak Life
My desire is to be the kind of person who pleases God and blesses others with my words. Before the words even leap from my tongue, I try to remember these three things: Halt, Pray and Speak Life! I want my words to be life giving. I never know when my words could be the very message that someone needs to carry on.
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