"It is better for me to die than to live, because I have heard insulting calumnies, and I am overwhelmed with grief. Lord, command me to be delivered from such anguish; let me go to the everlasting abode; Lord, refuse me not. For it is better for me to die than to endure so much misery in life, and to hear these insults!" —Tobit 3:6
Tobit was a prisoner-of-war, exile, fugitive, and blind man. But he could live with all that. What brought him to despair was an insult from his wife (Tb 3:6).
Sarah saw her seven husbands killed by a demon on the nights of her weddings. But she could live with that. However, when she was verbally attacked by one of her maids, she thought of hanging herself (Tb 3:8-10).
Sometimes the tongue is more deadly and destructive than a gun, knife, or even bomb. The tongue "exists among our members as a whole universe of malice. The tongue defiles the entire body. Its flames encircle our course from birth, and its fire is kindled by hell" (Jas 3:6). The tongue "is a restless evil, full of deadly poison" (Jas 3:8). "If a person is without fault in speech he is a man in the fullest sense, because he can control his entire body" (Jas 3:2).
The Holy Spirit came in fiery tongues at the first Christian Pentecost (Acts 2:3) and gave birth to the Church. May the fire of the Holy Spirit purify our tongues as soon as possible.
Prayer: Father, when I receive Holy Communion, may the body and blood of Jesus consecrate my tongue.
Promise: "When people rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage but live like angels in heaven." —Mk 12:25
Praise: St. Norbert brought many back to faith in Jesus present as the Blessed Sacrament.
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, January 4, 2001
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, January 24, 2001