Holding My Peace

The LORD shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace. – Exodus 14:14

The human tongue, 10 centimeters long and a conglomeration of eight muscles is not the strongest part of our body but it is one of the deadliest. James 3:8 says “no one can tame the tongue, it is restless and evil, full of deadly poison.” For such a small part of our body, the tongue can inflict serious damage!

Today, was one of those days when I was tempted to unleash this weapon of mass destruction. I received a tart request that I felt was unfair, and my human nature wanted to push back, and stand up for myself. Before I could unholster my weapon, I heard a gentle whisper encouraging me to hold my peace and let the Lord fight my battles. I swallowed the venom that sat on my tongue and physically walked away.

We live in a culture that applauds the “clapback.” The world says to push back against wrongs and if you can do it with sass and snark, you get bonus points. But God has a different plan. The word tells us to “set a guard over our mouth” (Psalms 141:3). God does not reward us for the clever retort but for keeping our tongues from evil. 1 Peter 3:10 instructs us that “If you want to enjoy life and see many happy days, keep your tongue from speaking evil and your lips from telling lies.”

In heated moments, I can easily forget the end goal. I don’t want the temporary satisfaction of having bested someone with my words. I want the soothing tongue in Proverbs 15:4. I want my tongue to rejoice and body to rest in hope (Acts 2:26). So, I will follow Psalms 39:1 and “watch my ways and keep my tongue from sin; I will put a muzzle on my mouth while in the presence of the wicked.” I may not get high fives and finger snaps for the clapback but the rewards of holding my peace are far greater.

About Karen Swim

Karen Swim is the Founder and CEO of Words For Hire, a strategic public relations agency that helps companies identify, connect with and engage their target audience.