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The Power of Words

The Power of Words

The power that words can have upon people is immensely significant, and something to consider giving more thought. Have you ever considered that your words have an effect on people? Of course, you know this. When you’re upset at someone, there are times when you want to “get them back” and often (sometimes too often) you may use your words to do so. Or maybe someone did a surprisingly thoughtful act for you and you wanted to write them a special note of gratitude. Whether you realize it or not, your words do have power and will affect in either a positive or negative way. They have the power to degrade and destroy, and they have the power to uplift and encourage. “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.” (Prov. 18:21) This is seriously not to be taken lightly. There are many passages in the Bible referring to the power of words.

“Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” Ephesians 4:29

“There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” Proverbs 12:18

“Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.” Proverbs 16:24

“For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.” Matthew 12:37

There are hundreds of verses that talk about this topic. I believe that we should strive with every part of our being to heed to what the Bible says and think before we speak (Ecclesiastes 5:2). There are countless times when we are frustrated, angry or distraught and speak what we think. Speaking negatively over others or even yourself will bring negativity into your life. Constantly dwelling on your inner negative thoughts will cause you to eventually be a negative person. Allowing that negativity to consume you (without really realizing it) allows the enemy to control you even more, slowly but surely. He will continue to speak lies to you that you will believe about yourself or about a specific person. However, in order to reduce this from happening, take every thought captive. When a negative thought comes into mind, renounce it with a positive thought. Don’t even take the time to think about it. Think the opposite of what you’re thinking, and speak it out loud. With this specific situation, I’m mainly talking about our inner thoughts. We all, at some time or another, struggle with our inner thoughts. Learning to deal with them is hard, but well worth it. I struggle with this often, so this is a great learning experience that I go through every day as well.

Another way that your words have incredible power is over people. A friend, a family member, a stranger. Take, for example, a stranger. Being a child of God, one who wants to use the love of God to bring love to people and help be a positive influence to bring someone closer to Him, we need to strive to be this person everywhere we go. Even if it’s someone that you don’t even know. Perhaps you see a tired, worn-out mother with her four small children at the grocery store. An average person would just walk past, ignore, or maybe even get agitated that her kids are so loud and obnoxious. Your part could be to go out of your way, and ask if you can do anything to help her. Tell her that she is an amazing mother and God loves her so very much. Something as simple as this could completely change her mood and make her day. In the same way, a family member could be going through a rough time in their stage of life. A word of encouragement and love would most likely mean so much to them and uplift them in a positive way.

Do you understand in more depth how words can really affect people? I encourage you to do a “check” over yourself. How often do you think negative thoughts? How often do you speak to them? How often do you think positive thoughts? Words are not just words. They have meaning. The Heavenly Father only speaks life. The enemy will easily persuade you to think and speak degrading things (or death). Speak life.

Jim Staley

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