The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing. Prov. 12:18 (NIV) Gentle words are a tree of life; a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit. Prov. 15:4 (NLT) If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless. James 1:26 (ESV) Let your conversation be always full of grace. Col. 4:6 (NIV)

Dear heavenly Father, nothing carries more potential for hope and harm, building up and tearing down, giving life and dolling death than our words. Therefore, as this day begins, we choose to take responsibility for our words.

And since our lips will speak of the preoccupation of our hearts, we begin today by setting our minds, hearts, and affections on things above—where Jesus is sitting at your right hand. Father, thank you for hiding our lives in Jesus, for he is our guarantee of complete forgiveness, perfect righteousness, and citizenship in heaven. No matter whatever else is going on in our world, in Christ, you have given us riches beyond measure, peace beyond understanding, and life, truly abundant. We praise and bless you. May this good news win the day, seize our hearts, and shape our words.

Today, we will most likely experience difficult people and disappointing circumstances; challenging relationships and unplanned for interruptions; personal limitations and repeat offenders. Father, it’s our desire to respond with mercy and grace, as opposed to reacting out of irritation and anger. So we look to you—we abandon ourselves to you, and the power of the gospel and the ministry of your Holy Spirit.

May the words of our mouths, born out of the meditation of our hearts, reflect and reveal Jesus. And when they don’t, grant us quick repentances and more grace. So very Amen we pray, in Jesus’ wonderful and merciful name.