With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God. (ESV)
What a strange thing that God has given to us. James is speaking here of our tongue. He talks about the ways that we use it and also abuse it. With great freedom comes great responsibility. (Shameless reference to Spiderman acknowledged.) We find ourselves blessing the Lord, and yet using the same tongue to curse people whom he has created.
Do you wonder that God gave us a tongue at all. Imagine for a moment that you were God. Would you give creatures the ability to curse your name? It would be tempting for us, if we were in his position, to make robotic creatures who could only bless, and not curse, with the tongue we were to give them.
Now imagine what God did in sending his son, Jesus to Earth. Jesus comes to those who would ultimately despise and reject him. In spite of their hatred and rebellion he willingly lays down his life for them. What does he hear from those he came to save? He hears the words, "Crucify. Crucify him!" What a horrific use of the tongue.
God gave us a tongue to use for his glory. So many of us have not realized the danger that the tongue is for us. We have to surrender its use to the Lord or we will be guilty of saying words that will tear others apart. I believe that it hurts the Savior's heart when we use our tongue to hurt others whom he loves. James admonishes us today to pay attention to how we use the tongue.
Ask the Lord to help you surrender the use of your tongue to the Lord's purpose. He wants you to bless his name and bless those whom he has made. Lord help us.