As an introduction and reinforcement to James' teaching on the power of words, I gave a small tube of toothpaste and a plate to a few of my students.
I instructed them to squeeze the toothpaste onto the plate.
Some made designs and some were skeptical of what was to come next.
I assured them they would not have to eat the toothpaste or smear it on anyone, etc.
Once the toothpaste was on the plates, I instructed them to put the toothpaste back into the tube.
I told them to put it all back and leave no evidence of the toothpaste ever leaving the tube.
They immediately realized I was asking something that was not possible.
We likened this to the words we use.
Once we speak them, we cannot take them back.
We can apologize and change our future words, but we can never put the words back into our mouths as if they were never spoken.
I wish I had thought enough in advance to have a small tube of toothpaste (samples from dentists, etc.) to send home with each student as a Seminary in My Pocket reminder.
I love James' teachings on bridling our words and all the imagery he uses to teach this principle.