Parking The Potty Mouth

Christ Esteem Not Self Esteem [Working Title]
December 30, 2016
The Epic Senior Prank of ‘89
January 20, 2017

Potty mouth

Parking The Potty Mouth

By Vinnie MacIsaac

 

Wayne and Garth from “Waynes World” are 90’s pop cultural icons.

As Wayne once said to Garth, “You kiss your mother this that mouth”?[1] It is an old expression that has even repeated by everyone from Austin Powers[2] to Nick Furry[3], but it is a lot more severe expression of that sentiment we find embedded in the original promulgation given to us.

“With the tongue, we praise our Lord and Father, and with it, we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.” James 3:9-10 NIV

It’s not my fault; some people just are asking for it! A few weeks ago I was trying to get around the corner of a parking lot during the mad pre-Christmas shopping rush, and this moron was holding up 10-15 cars because she did not want to pull to the side as she rolled down her window to share Christmas greetings with someone she knew on the sidewalk. She held us all up just stopped in the middle of the roadway! I beeped my horn a few times and nothing! She pretended I was not even there! I confess my blood was boiling and I swear I was about to roll down my window and blast her when the car heading the other way beat me to it! The driver yelled at her with such pure and mighty rage; that I feared for her safety, and she did as well as it scared her into pulling over right away. Rarely in my whole life had I heard such a perfect production of profanity ever be performed as he did at that moment. I mean it was truly Oscars-worthy, but was I any better? Maybe I did not threaten to kill her, among other things (too crude to repeat), as he had, but the second I muttered to myself that she was a moron, I was just as guilty in the sight of God.

 Even if I can navigate around the annoying ones what in the world what do I do with the rude ones! It is the nasty and the mean ones that personally get under my skin! I just want to give them a piece of my mind! But that is the problem, what mind do I have? That is what the Holy Spirit keeps asking me every time I misstep with my tongue. Do you have the mind of Christ burning in you or the mind of Vinnie?

The Greek word Kenosis means to empty. Jesus emptied Himself of his own will and calls us to be like-minded. We have been called to think like Jesus just as Jesus thought like His Father.

In Philippians 2:5 The Apostle Paul is on point with the source of the change we need when he says, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus,” and if that was not damning enough the Holman Christian Standard puts it this way, “Make your own attitude that of Christ Jesus.” And leaving zero wiggle room the NIV nails me with, “in your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus.” The bottom line is, I need less Vinnie and more Christ.

 Christ is holy. With our tounges, we lift up praises to Him who is Holy, perfect, and righteous and the powerful redeemer of our souls! Then we turn around and cast down into mud and humiliation and shame the very same people whom our good God redeems. We gladly receive from Him blessing and favor while we rob dignity from those whom He loves. James rightfully declares our actions as sin.

 According to James, the tongue has us under its control and not the other way around.

“If we put bits into the mouths of horses so that they obey us, we guide their whole bodies as well. Look at the ships also: though they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs.” (James 3:3-4 ESV)

The window of your maturity as a Christian is your mouth and how to talk to others with it. It is the metric best shows the condtion of the heart.

Riding a horse is not only fun and exhilarating it is a spiritual event, but it is also a Bible lesson. The horse is going where you yank the reign because it is attached to the bit in his mouth. Likewise, the tongue is the steering wheel of your life. You might think you control it, you might think you tell it what to say and when to say it, but it just might be that your tongue rather controls you, and is taking you where it wills.  The problem with that is that according to Jesus the tongue is simply the slave to your heart. Jesus when speaking about the connection between the mouth and the heart told us, “For out of the heart come evil thoughts—murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander.” (Matthew 15:19 NIV) Think of it this way, you know those slips that just slip out, or that you mutter under your breath they are not slips at all but rather they are the seeping of the sewage in the heart up into your mouth you eventually end up vomiting out all over those around you. If the idea of sewage creeping up into your mouth and being spewed out on people around you does not gross you out then see it this way, according to the James you are setting people on fire with fire that directly comes from Hell (see James 3:6). You, therefore, are the Devil’s minions doing his deeds in this world.

 For this reasons James says,

“Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. For we all stumble in many ways…” (James 3:12b ESV)

“Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. For we all stumble in many ways…” (James 3:12b ESV)

I remember as a young new pastor in one of my first churches I attended a Bible study, and a question was asked by the teacher that morning, and a new believer in Christ spoke up and answered. And while her response was brilliant, she mistakenly cited Peter for a remark made by Paul. A much more senior and trained member brutally spoke up, pointing out her error and stressing the importance of Christians having their facts right least they lead someone astray. After class, I cornered that senior man and asked why he had done that. To which he replied, “Pastor, she was just wrong, and if you’re not going to tell her I am.” I remember walking away thinking; she may have been factually wrong, but in the sight of God he was morally wrong. I’ll take being factually wrong over spiritually wrong any day!

Nine-year-old Ralphie Parker, in the class movie, “A Christmas Story” had a potty mouth that got him in trouble. But a potty mouth is so much more then swearing.

 What I have come to understand is it is not just about teachers, though they bear a significant burden. I have come to realize that having a potty mouth is more than saying a cuss word, taking the Lord’s name in vain, or creatively stringing together crude and often sexually demeaning expressions together in a way to morally shame someone one. It is more simply the truth of where you are spiritually in regards to your fellow man.  And James has come to remind us, that God cares little for how you talk to him (praise) if how you talk to others (curse) is not right.

Business partners hands on top of each other symbolizing companionship

All praising God begins and ends at how we love each other.

 

And how we love each other starts at where our heart is at.  How can we really love God if we can’t even respect his children by speaking to them in a decent manner? Put your heart, where Jesus put His mind, He is God, but was not ashamed to become like the least of all men. Why don’t we all practice putting ourselves in the “shoes” of the annoying people holding up parking lot traffic in our life? If your a Christian, park the potty mouth, and stop disrespecting God himself. 


FOOTNOTES
[1] Wayne’s World
[2] Mike Myers character
[3] Marvel Comics Character

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: