The Power of Words - Part 2 — Morning Devotions - Hope 103.2

The Power of Words – Part 2 — Morning Devotions

Consider your words carefully because they contain much meaning and much power. Cherish the words of life you share with others.

Listen: Chris Witts presents Morning Devotions.

By Chris WittsThursday 16 Dec 2021Morning Devotions with Chris WittsDevotionsReading Time: 4 minutes

Talking again about the power of our words, and the big lesson, a simple one really, is learn to listen well when communicating with others. Stephen Covey wrote the book called The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, and in it he talks about the habit of listening with the aim of really trying to understand. We call it active listening.

And it’s something we can all learn to do with a bit of practice. Sometimes you and I are like the couple who were with some friends and the subject of marriage counselling came up. Mary said, Oh, Tom and I will never need counselling. We have a great relationship. He was a communications major in college and I majored in drama. He communicates real well and I just act like I’m listening. That’s not the way to communicate effectively is it?

When you are talking with another person face-to-face it is important to focus in on that person and listen with the intent to understand them. Do you know people like that? I’m afraid we can be guilty of not participating well—we yawn, look away, gaze about the room or fidget with our car keys. That’s sending a signal that we’re not really that interested. It’s important to reflect both content and emotions with different words to the person you are listening to. It’s not a matter of repeating back the same words and inflections—a tape recorder can do that. It‘s a matter of reflecting to them the content and emotions of what they are saying. It means I really heard and understood what you said.

A golden rule is: it’s OK to ask questions for clarification. But don’t interrupt. Probe gently to find out what it is that the person is saying. That’s not being rude—it’s showing you care. This is an area where us guys need a little help. Unfortunately we men often don’t get what the women are saying. Know what you are going to say before you say it. Then ask yourself the question, Do I really want to say that?

The Bible says in Colossians 4:6 (TLB), “Let your conversation be gracious as well as sensible”. Good advice again. In other words choose well what you’re going to say, because it’s important:

  • Is it true?
  • Is it hurtful?
  • Is it inspiring?
  • Will your words build up someone?
  • Is it necessary?
  • Is it kind?

Consider your words carefully because they contain much meaning and much power. A woman once wrote to the editor of Christianity Today this story:

One afternoon, my four-year-old niece Paige and my six-year-old daughter Ashley started an argument, which grew louder and louder. I was about to intervene when my daughter stormed down the stairs. “Mom,” she yelled, “Jesus wants us to be the salt of the earth and Paige is being the pepper!”

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Are you being salt? Or are you being the pepper?

Choose well what you don’t say. We read in Ephesians 5:4 (TLB):

“Dirty stories, foul talk and coarse jokes—these are not for you. Instead, remind each other of God’s goodness and be thankful”.

Interesting to know that the Greek word for ‘silly talk’ is a compound word. It is the combination of móros and legó. Legó is ‘speaking or laying forth in words’ and móros means ‘foolish, stupid’, and is where we get our English word ‘moron’. In other words: Am I going to sound like a moron if I say this? Coarse jesting is referring to vulgar or ‘adult humour’ and innuendos. Ask yourself: Would I be embarrassed or ashamed if God heard me say this.

Colossians 3:8 (TLB) says, “…throw away all these rotten garments of anger, hatred, cursing, and dirty language”. You cannot control what others say or do, but you can always control how you respond. When things get heated, commit yourself to never escalate. Finish the conversation when you can speak calmly.

Thomas Jefferson once said that when you get angry count to 10 before you respond. He said if you get really angry, count to 100 before you respond.

Remember the power of words. Matthew 4:4 (NCV) says:

“Jesus answered, ‘It is written in the Scriptures, A person does not live by eating only bread, but by everything God says.”‘

Words are powerful. It is the word of God that saves us. By the word of Jesus Christ himself we are redeemed and brought back to life. Cherish the word of life and cherish the words of life you share with others.

Prayer: Father, let the words that come from my mouth be words of life and light. Let me be an encouragement to my spouse and my children. Help me to take away all the abusive speech that tears and destroys and fill me with your presence and power as I use your words as my words. In Jesus Name. Amen