"Mmmmmm," was the only sound that Ginny could make when she came into the house after school.
"What's the matter with you?" asked her mother as she walked into the kitchen. Then she saw that Ginny's mouth was covered with a piece of tape. "I suppose you have a good reason for the tape over your mouth," said her mother. "But you will need to take it off to eat your snack."
Ginny carefully peeled the tape off and asked, "Aren't you going to ask me why the tape was on my mouth, Mommy?"
"OK, Ginny. Why was the tape on your mouth?" asked her mother.
Ginny sat down at the table and said, "Well, Peter Jones was being really bad at school today. If anyone even said, "Hello," to him, he would say bad things to them. And he told some lies about Julie and almost got her into trouble. Finally, the teacher sent him to the principal's office. I don't know what made him act like that."
When Ginny finished telling about Peter, her mother said, "Well that still doesn't explain why you had tape on your mouth."
Ginny looked embarrassed and said, "Peter was being so bad, Mommy, that I wanted to just yell at him and tell him to stop. But I knew that was not what Jesus would want me to do. It was hard to keep from saying anything, so I took a piece of tape and put it on my mouth."
Her mother laughed and said, "Ginny, you're so funny. I guess tape over the mouth might make a person stop and think before he said anything. But God gives us a better way of remembering what words we should say. First of all, God tells us we must love Him with all our hearts. If we do that we will be able to obey everything else that is in His Word."
"The Bible says we shouldn't tell lies, Mommy. But what else does it say about bad words?" Ginny asked.
"It tells us that we must not use God's name in a bad or silly way. We should always give special honor to God's name," answered her mother. "The Bible also tells us not to say evil or bad things about people.
"I'm so sorry that Peter had such an awful day. We'll pray for him," continued her mother. "But we need to ask Jesus to keep us from saying wrong things too. The devil tries to make people, especially people who love Jesus, say naughty things. He wants us to gossip, and lie, and say bad things. But Jesus loves us and He will help us to say good things.
"There is even a verse in the Bible that says, 'I will bless the Lord at all times.' It is hard to say bad things aloud if we are saying good things to Jesus in our hearts."
God gives us specific instructions in His Word regarding how we should talk. That important topic is what we will be teaching your child in this lesson. This week, explain to your child that sweet, sour, and bitter tastes can be distinguished by the taste buds on our tongues. Not only is the tongue capable of tasting, but also it is a movable organ capable of helping us to speak.
Compare good and kind words to the sweet taste on our tongues. Compare mean or unkind words to sour or bitter tastes. On a piece of paper, let your child draw two faces—one with a smile, the other making a face as if something tasted bad. Under each face, make a list of words which are illustrated by the expression on the face.