Today’s Readings for the Daily Office
Psalm 38 (Morning)
Psalm 119:25-48 (Evening)
1 Kings 9:24-10:13
In the epistle appointed for today from A Letter of James, the author admonishes us about how damaging our speaking can be. He asserts that, “Out of the same mouth come praise and curses. This should not be so my friends…Does a fountain flow with both fresh and brackish water from the same outlet?”
Our current political and theological climate enables us to easily fall into the trap of using our voice “to praise our Lord” then using it “to invoke curses on our fellow men…Out of the same mouth come praise and curses.”
Today’s combustible environment certainly provides opportunities to express strong and passionate feelings about what is happening in our society, government, and community, and we have the responsibility to speak out when we believe people are being wronged. We are especially concerned for those who have no voices with which to address discrimination and isolation. But the apostle reminds us “what a vast amount of timber can be set ablaze by the tiniest spark. And the tongue is a fire, representing in our body the whole wicked world.” We want what we say to make a positive impact and not create more negativity.
Written by Doug Cummins, Ph.D.
Doug taught speech and theatre on the university level for over thirty years. He is intensely interested in the way we speak and the inner meanings of the words we say. He holds the Master Divinity from Brite Divinity School and is Emeritus Professor at Furman University.