Words. Words spoken in haste or anger can produce lasting, detrimental effects. The wounds from some words can last a lifetime. Words spoken in love can produce lasting, positive effects. Sometimes those same words are passed down from generation to generation, passing the love and encouragement on. These are the natural consequences to words people speak. There can be much stronger, much more powerful consequences if the person speaking the words is filled with the Holy Spirit of God. The words of believers have such power to change lives and bring healing to the broken because the Holy Spirit dwells within. Yet I wonder how many of us actually consider what we say and how we say it?
The natural realm that we live in has a spiritual side and when we are spiritually receptive we can see how what is happening in the natural is being mirrored in the spiritual. I am sometimes amazed at Pastors in churches who ‘spiritualize’ the Word of God and do not give heed to the fact that the Word of God is true just as it is written. Yes it has a spiritual side, or context, if you will, and it is ALSO true in the natural. When the Word of God says He spoke through the mouth of an ass, that actually occurred. (And yes, He still uses jackasses today! 🙂 )
Quite often our words, spoken in haste or anger, bring pain to someone who isn’t even present. Gossips often stab someone in the back when they are not around, not understanding that their words are carrying arrows to the victim. We step all over people, metaphorically speaking, and those same people can suffer spiritually and physically.
The words of our mouths and the meditations of our hearts have the power to direct our path and the paths of others. Proverbs 18:21 tells us that “Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.” Death and life – cursing and blessing — exist in the mouth of believers and it is up to each person to decide how they intend to use their mouths – whether for good or for evil.
I believe that only someone who has suffered the ravages of verbal and physical abuse can truly comprehend the life-giving power of words of love, acceptance, and encouragement. Sometimes all a victim needs in order to give them the strength to fight to gain back stolen ground is to know that someone is listening: that someone hears and cares about what they are saying and acknowledges that what happened was not right, nor was it their fault. In order to lift a person from victim to victor we must enter into their arena with them, standing back-to-back, standing in the battle with them, and through empathy and compassion teaching them how to become the victor, leading them to higher ground with words. Words of life. Words of love. Words of encouragement. Words of compassion. Words of constructive advice. Words of hope.
Our words have the ability to give life, to restore health to mind and body, or to destroy. We get to choose. I confess that there have been times when my words did not bring honor to the Father nor did they give life or hope to the hearer. I am determined that will not be the case again.
Choose this day whom you will serve…..as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.