Matthew 18:7 What sorrow awaits the world, because it tempts people to sin. Temptations are inevitable, but what sorrow awaits the person who does the tempting.
This verse really got me to thinking about our words, our words of advice. I know that I have tempted people to do wrong. I have. I wish that I could say that I haven't, but oh I have. We often teach our children to do wrong by teaching them to tell white lies to keep from hurting peoples feelings. We should teach them to not say anything if they can't say anything nice, but we should never teach them to lie. How often does learning to tell a white lie so we will not be hurtful lead us into saying yes to others sins where we will not be hurtful?
I am a people pleaser. In ways this is a good thing...but not if you are a people please to a fault. I never want to be disagreeable. I look back as I read this verse and ask myself, "How many people have I encouraged to sin because I just wanted to be agreeable?" I must learn to be courageous when I need to be. At the very least I should walk away from the conversation instead of being agreeable when I know that agreeing will lead to encouragement of somebody committing a sin. No matter how small the sin seems to the world, a sin is a sin is a sin.
We are never to tempt others to sin, ever!! We must be so careful of this, so aware of our words, of our actions. We must be aware of our in-actions too. As much as we are each responsible for our own actions, we become responsible for somebody else's actions when we tempt someone to sin. We are taking their forever into our hands at that point.
So often we ask God to help us. We are good at asking God to help us with problems. Sometimes we are good to ask God to help us with our day and our plans. What we must get good at is asking God to help us with our words, not just in the morning, but each and every time we go to respond to somebody, each and every time we open our mouths.
We need to especially practice saying, when someone ask our advice, "Let me pray about this first, before I give you an answer." or at the least, "I just don't know how to give you advice on this matter." We should never jump in at the heat of a moment with advice, we too often get caught up ourselves with our own emotions, and sometimes our own agenda. Our past is so tied to our experiences and our past hurts are tied up in our advice, we need to take time to clear our heads of those and ask God to help us with our words of advice so that we never, ever tempt someone else to sin.