”Before you speak, let your words go through 3 gates: are they true? Are they necessary? Are you friendly? ”
What we say has a big impact. Our words and the words we hear from others affect our lives.
build up or put down
encourage or scare
heal or hurt
bless or curse
We often underestimate the impact and power of our words. That is why it is so important to pay attention to what we say about ourselves, what we say to others or about them and what we say about our circumstances.
In Proverbs 18 verse 21 we read: “Words have power: you can choose between life and death
We all need words of encouragement, acceptance, confirmation, recognition. Such words make us grow and increase our self-esteem. Negative, criticizing words do the opposite, our self-esteem drops. If primarily deficits are addressed and searched for in kindergarten and school age, we cannot develop according to our potential. Negative beliefs block us. Our social system is largely programmed for the negative and faulty. Even in conflict situations, it is easy for us to make quick judgments, make accusations, and insult our counterparts.
When I read the account of creation in Genesis 1: 1-25 last week, the power of words, especially God’s word, was brought to my attention. It is written there that the whole creation (cosmos, earth, plants, animals and people) was created by God’s Word. We read a total of 6 times:
And it happened
And god saw, that it was good
God speaks and it happens and what God creates is good.
“What God says is true and reliable” Proverbs 3.5
“God has promised her, and what God says will happen!” Luke 1:3
Only one word from God’s mouth can do great things.
“In the beginning was the Word. The Word was with God and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. He created everything that is. There is nothing that the Word has not created. Life itself was in him, and this life gives light to all people ”John 1: 1-4
God’s Word is truth and when we say it about our lives, about our fellow human beings and about our circumstances it has the power to build, encourage, heal and bless us.
Lord, I am not worthy for you to go under my roof, but speak only one word, so my soul will be healed (Matthew 8: 8)
Since we were created in the image of God, our words also have strength. So let’s say positive, encouraging and true words.
Let us encourage!
Let’s use life-giving words!
Let’s give each other value and dignity!
Let us meet each other in love and mercy!
Let’s give out compliments more often!
In conflict situations we pay attention to our choice of words, it makes a difference how we say something!
Instead of wanting to change others, we start with ourselves by encouraging instead of criticizing!
What the Bible says about words:
James 1, 19
Remember, dear brothers and sisters: always be ready to listen to someone right away; but think carefully before you speak yourself.
1 Corinthians 1, 10
Speak so that your words do not upset you, and do not let divisions arise between you.
Matthew 6, 7-8
When praying, you should not string together empty words like the pagans, ‘who do not know God’. They think they will be heard if they say a lot of words. Don’t do it like her, because your father knows what you need, even before you ask him to.
No bad word can come from your lips. Rather, what you say should be good, reasonable, and helpful; then your words will do good to those to whom they are addressed.
Ephesians 5, 3
You shouldn’t even engage in words with sexual immorality and shamelessness of any kind, but also with greed, because it is not appropriate for God’s holy people to deal with such things.
Colossians 4, 6
Your words should always be kind and flavored with the salt of ‘wisdom’. Then you will also understand how to give an appropriate answer to everyone who is talking to you.
James 3, 2-12
[…] We are often often and in many respects indebted, but mostly with what we say. […] If we put the bridle in a horse’s mouth, we make the whole animal compliant and can steer it the way we want it. Or think of a ship: as big as it is and as strong as the winds to which it is exposed, it is kept on the course by a tiny oar that the helmsman determines. It is the same with the tongue: it is only a small organ in our body and can nevertheless boast of accomplishing great things. […] no one can control the tongue. She is a constant source of trouble, a mischief-maker, filled with deadly poison. With her we praise the one who is our Lord and Father, and with her we curse people who are created in the image of God. Blessings and curse come from the same mouth. That, my siblings, must not be! […]
Proverbs 11, 12-13
Those who speak contemptuously of others have no mind; Understanders shut up. A person who carries on any rumor also speaks secrets; a trustworthy person treats them confidentially.
Proverbs 12, 18
Some people’s words are like knife sticks; the words of wise people bring healing.
Proverbs 13, 3
Those who can shut up keep their lives; whoever tears it open too much leads to ruin.
Proverbs 14, 23
Every job brings wages; but chatter is only a disadvantage.
Proverbs 15, 1 & 26
A conciliatory answer cools the anger, a hurtful word fuels it.
The Lord detests evil plans, but kind words are right before him.
Proverbs 16, 24
Friendly words are like honey: sweet for the palate and healthy for the whole body.
Proverbs 18, 20-21
What someone achieves with his words determines his satisfaction. The tongue has power over life and death. If you enjoy the language, you can achieve a lot through it.
Proverbs 20, 15
There are tons of gold and precious stones, but insightful words are a rarity.