Many of the exhortations James gives us in his book would make great New Year resolutions for 2016. In today’s text, we find one that could perhaps be “the mother” of all New Year resolutions– that we would resolve to control our tongues. The problem with such a resolution is that it seems to be impossible to keep. James says in 3:8 that “No man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.” So would it be a waste of time to make such a resolution? No, not if we are born again, because the spring of the heart from which our words comes forth has been changed, so that by the power of the Spirit, we can actually control our tongues.
Happy New Year to everyone and may God give us all the power to be those who are slow to speak and quick to listen. And may all the words that we speak in 2016 be words of kindness and encouragement to others!