Words are powerful. They have the opportunity to build up, to tear down, to shape new ideas and set events into motion. Words are so powerful that by God’s very word, He spoke the world into existence. Words are so powerful that James, in the New Testament, said that our tongue is like a rudder on a ship that can steer our whole life. The tongue is a small body part that can make such an impact on the life we live. What comes from the tongue can bring life or death to people and situations. Children’s lives can be directed by the faithfilled words of a parent or self esteem crushed by cutting words. The same body part can cause a life to take two different directions.
Words can bless and words can hurt. Remember the saying “Sticks and stones can break my bones, but words will never hurt me?” Not true! Words can pierce your heart and leave a scar. I don’t remember much about 7th grade, but I remember a boy who sat behind me in social studies class who said something so mean it isn’t even worth repeating. Words can hurt. Well, I’m passed those hurtful words and I know God’s word about me is true and have chosen to believe what His word says about me more than the negative words of a person, but filtering hurtful words doesn’t come without a battle for the hearer.
At some point in our lives, we have all been the recipient and have probably even been the bearer of hurtful words. While we can’t choose whether or not someone will ever speak words that have the potential to hurt us, we can choose what to do with those words. Most importantly, we can choose what kind of words we are going to speak over and to people. Proverbs 12:18 says “Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” With life comes people that speak words that hurt, but life also brings opportunities to use our words to bring healing to a hurting world. Our words have the power to build someone up, to bring encouragement and can be like a healing ointment to a wounded heart.
Sometimes we underestimate the power of a kind word spoken at the right time to encourage and bless someone. Proverbs 16:24 says “Kind words are like honey–sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.” My kids love honey. We use honey to sweeten yogurt, pancakes, peanut butter and more. They will sneak it straight from the honey bear if I’m not watching closely enough. Honey is so sweet even a child can’t resist it. Today, let your words sweeten someone’s day. Be an encourager and choose to be a person that uses the power of your words to bring healing and life to people. Your words like honey will taste sweet–both to you and the hearer.