I love this track from the newest TobyMac LP, Eye on It. Speak Life is all about using our speech to lift others up and not tear them down. With so much negativity and pain in the world, much of it caused by our misuse of the gift of speech, the song is a great reminder.
Of course, it's naive to think that we can successfully resolve to use our mouths the way God intended. Our experience with busted new year's resolutions should tell us that. Our sin gets in the way. We get in the way.
That's why Jesus warns us, "I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in Me and I in them bear much fruit [by which Jesus means when we believe in Him and are so connected to Him, we're supplied with His life and goodness, and so life and goodness spring from us], because apart from Me you can do nothing" (John 15:5).
If we are to "speak life" and not death to the world, enlivening others with the love and goodness that comes from God, we must retain our focus on Jesus Christ, God the Son, Who has brought love into our world. (We need to keep our eye on Him!)
And when our attention wanders onto the lost, dead pathways of this self-centered world, we need to return to Christ, turning from sin and trusting Him with our past, present, and future.
I love Paul's words in the New Testament book of Philippians: "Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things" (Philippians 4:8).
Then, you'll speak life!
(And if you're the praying type, ask God to help me practice what I just preached.)