We have many opportunities every day to speak. What are we doing with those words? Proverbs 18:21 reminds us that “death and life are in the power of the tongue” (KJV).
That’s powerful! That means that every time we speak to our spouse, our children, our church members, our neighbors, and our colleagues, we have the choice to either impart life to them or cause death.
Honestly, sometimes it’s easier (and more tempting) to complain, gossip, argue, and degrade. But these words don’t bring life. They often bring hurt and discouragement to the hearer—and they don’t leave the speaker feeling very good either. Instead, speak life! Look for ways to encourage, compliment, thank, affirm, and bless others with your words. These words impart life to those around you.
Life-giving words can be hard to speak, though, especially if you don’t feel that people deserve them. But begin praying that God will give you opportunities to do this. Pray that He will give you the right words to say at the right time. Pray that He will change your heart and give you the desire to build up those around you—especially those you feel don’t deserve it.
What a difference it will make! As you seek to encourage your spouse, they will be blessed. Your children crave and will appreciate your affirmation. Your neighbors and coworkers will be uplifted by the compliments. And your church members will be changed by your prayers and comments of blessing.
You will notice that these types of words connect you with those around you, and your love for people will increase. You will also notice that these words bring life, not only to others but also to yourself! “Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips” (Psalm 141:3, NKJV).
Have a survival tip that someone shared with you once upon a time, or that you have learned along the way? Send it in to share here at: [email protected]