Listen! if thou wouldst know thy heart
“For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.”
We might need to look below the surface, considering the feelings behind our choice of words. What we say, especially when we are distressed or under pressure, may reveal a lot about what we are really like inside. Jesus said: “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” (Matthew 12:34) In other words, our speech often reflects our innermost thoughts, desires, and attitudes.
Is our outlook on life realistic, optimistic, and hopeful? Then the tone and substance of our conversations will likely reflect that. Do we tend to be rigid, pessimistic, or judgmental? If so, we might discourage others either by what we say or by how we say it. We may not be aware of how negative our thinking or speech has become. We might even believe that our way of looking at things is correct. But we must beware of self-deception.
Simply put, we like to talk about the things that matter to us. We need, then, to ask ourselves: ‘What do my conversations reveal about my heart condition? When I am with my family or fellow believers, does my conversation center on spiritual matters or does it invariably gravitate to sports, clothes, movies, food, my latest purchases, or some trivialities?’ Perhaps unwittingly, our lives and our thoughts have come to revolve around secondary matters. Adjusting our priorities will improve our conversations as well as our lives.