Prayer, Plain and Simple

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

…No human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison (James 3:8).

The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit (Psalm 18:21).


Like nuclear matter released in the atmosphere or the down feathers of a pillow, when words are released, they cannot be undone. Words are a powerful force in our universe. With words, God created everything we see and everything we don’t see. He made us in His image, giving our mouths power and authority. It is up to us whether we use words for good or for ill.

Jesus warned us: every word we speak, even the “idle words”, the “jesting,” the “I-was-only-kidding-words”, the words I speak before I’ve had my morning coffee, the words I speak inadvertently – all of these words will be judged and taken very seriously by our Heavenly Father. Why? Because they evoke power in the world for good or for ill.

I have spoken many words that I regret – stupid, harmful words over my children when I was exhausted or exasperated, words of gossip, words of judgement, words against myself, words that have wounded others, words that have done harm, dishonoring words… All those words had a profoundly adverse affect on people and myself.

Thank God for the Blood of Jesus

Thank God I can be cleansed from my sin by the blood of Jesus. His Blood purifies me from the ill effects my sin has caused in the world. When I repent, He opens up the door to His forgiveness!

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness (1John 1:9).

Let’s break down this promised process of forgiveness…

A. He forgives my sin! What a miracle! The God of the universe takes me back, embracing me, and calling me His own. He doesn’t hold it against me! He’s not ticked off at me!

B. He cleanses me from this unrighteous way of living. He teaches me, trains me, and changes me into a person that is learning to bridle her tongue, keep it in check, and speak only words that segue nicely into prayer! That means that I no longer give myself permission to gossip, complain, or chatter mindlessly. Have I attained to perfection in this? Heavens, no! But I’m learning, praise God!

Have you been negatively impacted with the power of your words? Have others suffered as a result?

Pray this plain and simple prayer with me today. Let’s get free together!


When I think of the times I have blown it with my words, I am ridden with both remorse and conviction. I take my guilt to the cross. I see you there, bearing the guilt my words have inflicted. In agony you die bearing my sin. In effect, my words killed you.

But You and Your Father (and mine) had a plan in mind. And at just the right time in history, Jesus, You came, lived a perfect, sinless life so that You could bear the punishment of my sin. You poured Your precious life out for me, spilling all Your blood.

I thank You…

Dumbfounded by Your kindness and grace, overwhelmed by Your love and beauty, I receive Your forgiveness.

Now cleanse me and I shall be white as snow.

Only You can stop the ripples of my sin. I plead Your blood over each person my words have wounded. I ask You to bring healing and reconciliation and forgiveness and grace. Have mercy.

Lord have mercy.

Christ, have mercy.

Now, transform me into a person like Jesus, speaking only the words He heard His Father say. Only words that dovetail with prayer. Add Your matchless grace to my determination. Keep me accountable to this new way of life until it is a firmly established habit.

And I give Your thanks and praise!




Photo credit: chefranden via / CC BY

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