Think Before You Speak

I will watch my ways
and keep my tongue from sin.
             —Psalm 39:1

On November 10, 2016, Daniel Fitzpatrick, thirteen, of Staten Island, New York, wrote a heartbreaking letter detailing how he had been taunted and tormented by schoolmates. He then went to the attic of the family home, wrapped a belt around his neck, and hanged himself.

Bullying is the number-one cause of teen suicide. “The tongue has the power of life and death” (Prv 18:21).

Many adults are bullied as well. Victims of abusive language live lives of loneliness and feelings of worthlessness.

“If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless” (Jas 1:26).

“Set a guard over my mouth, O Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips” (Ps 141:3).

Freedom of speech does not
include the right to hurt.

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