“The lips of the Godly speak helpful words.” Proverbs 10:32 NLT
“Words create worlds in our hearts and minds more real than the one in which we live.”
My thoughts today are that “words create worlds.”
Helpful; that’s what you want to be, isn’t it? Why not start with the simplest thing you do everyday, and do most of every day? “The lips of the Godly speak helpful words.” Proverbs 10:32 NLT. Your words have unequaled power to be helpful or hurtful.
My friend, Andrew, recently said to me, “Words create worlds in our hearts and minds more real than the one in which we live.” That being true, use them well and speak them wisely! Jesus said, “The words that I have spoken to you bring God’s life-giving spirit.” John 6:63 TEV. Words create a world around you that is better, or worse; you choose which.
Words arouse love, or words can foment hate. Words inspire virtue, or words also soil the soul. Words can heal, or words can wound deeply. Entire nations have been stirred to unmatched courage and sacrifice, as was Great Britain by the eloquence of Sir Winston Churchill; and nations have been driven to unconscionable evil and cruelty, as was Nazi Germany by the ranting of Adolph Hitler. The Bible says, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue.” Proverbs 18:21 NKJV.
Growing up in southern Illinois, I often heard my Mom say, “If you can’t say something good, it’s better not to say anything at all.” Many years later, life has taught me that she was right. Have you ever said something that you wish you hadn’t? I think the answer for any one of us would have to be a resounding, “Yes.”
Maybe you remember a time you spoke angry, hurtful words, feeling justified at the moment but regretted later. Maybe you launched an unfounded accusation, which you found to be inaccurate soon after doing so. Or maybe you passed on hurtful information about someone that turned out not as true as you had believed it to be. Imagine how much better you would feel, if you just hadn’t said anything at all.
There have been times when I have regretted what I haven’t said, when I could and should have expressed thankfulness, or given a compliment, or offered an explanation, or spoken praise for a job well done. But there are many more times that I wish I hadn’t said what I did, or would not have said things when, and how, and to whom I chose to say them. It is good to learn that everything you think, and every time you feel like saying what you think, is not necessarily the right thing to do, or the best way or time to do so. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should.
Paul established wise guidelines for Godly relationships that apply well to your conversations, “You can say, ‘I am allowed to do anything’ – but not everything is helpful. You say, ‘I am allowed to do anything’ – but not everything is beneficial. Don’t think only of your own good. Think of other Christians and what is best for them.” 1 Corinthians 10:23-24 NLT.
From those verses you can learn: speak words that are helpful to others, not hurtful. “Let your conversation be full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” Colossians 4:5-6 NIV; speak words that are beneficial, not detrimental. “Kind words heal and help; cutting words wound and maim.” Proverbs 15:4 The Message; speak words that are best, not worst. “Use . . only helpful words, that kind that build up, so that what you say will do good for those who hear you.” Ephesians 4:29 TEV. Your words should make others feel better, not yourself. The supreme guideline? See Psalm 19:14 NIV.
My prayer for you today is that your words speak well of yourself and your faith.