This month’s guest post comes from Christy Pearce, who runs the blog Faith Like Dirty Diapers. Christy and I met a few months ago through the Compel writers group run by Proverbs 31 Ministries. Right away I was struck by how open and honest Christy is in her writing, using her own life experiences so that she may encourage others. She has a real passion for ministering to women, particularly through their marriage and parenting struggles.
Today she shares with us the power of words…
“Death and life are in the power of the tongue,
and those who love it will eat its fruits.”
If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a dirty look is worth a thousand sucker punches. I had the art of nasty facial contortions NAILED, and Momma always used to reply to my facial expressions—“If looks could kill, we’d all be dead.”
That was before I found the power of my mouth.
I was always a very timid and shy girl. I had LOTS of opinions, but lacked the boldness to voice them. Until, I got a little older. Then my mouth opened a little wider.
Older Not Necessarily Wiser…
In my late teens and early twenties I began shedding the inhibitions that once left me holding my tongue. I began to explore the power of stating my mind. I realized it felt good to get the truth off my chest. And standing up for myself or my opinions felt even better.
That is…until I was saved by grace.
You can’t shoot your mouth off in anger or be brutally blunt without your conscience gnawing away at you once you understand the grace of God.
But it didn’t stop me completely. I felt a lot like Meg Ryan’s character in “You’ve Got Mail.” Suddenly saying everything I ever wanted to say didn’t feel as good as I thought it should. It felt bad, and usually didn’t even result in winning the other person over to my side.
No matter how emphatically I stated my case, I could NEVER control people with my words. All I could expect in return was anger and hurt. I certainly didn’t want to go around spewing death in my conversations with those around me.
I still don’t want that. Yet, I still struggle with how I sound when I speak. I still struggle with what to say. But if I have learned anything, I have learned this:
Oh, can you ever influence people when words are “fitly” spoken.
Beautiful Words, Wonderful Words of LIFE!
I am a blogger and I participate in a few weekly linkups with a fabulous community of writers. One of them is #LiveFreeThursday with Suzanne Eller of Proverbs 31 Ministries. Suzie gives a prompt. Then on Thursday we share what God has laid on our hearts by linking up our blog entries on her website.
One week I didn’t get my post linked up until late on Thursday. It had been a busy week. I had bitten off more than I could chew, but I really love this community of women and didn’t want to miss out sharing together with them—not even for one week.
I eventually got the post done. It was later than normal, but I finally made it.
Once I posted my link, Suzie replied with five simple, but beautifully encouraging words: “I was waiting for you.”
It was almost like she knew I was thinking to myself, “No one will notice if I don’t link up this week. It isn’t “required” anyway, I could just skip this week.”
But instead of giving into that thought, I pushed on and got ‘er done.
Those simple words had such power. To know that I would have been missed if I didn’t link up made me feel valued. Those words made me think my writing may matter after all.
But more than that, her words made me want to share life giving words with others. I wanted others to know the feeling of encouragement that I felt.
Our words matter. All of them. The “power of life and death” resides in our words. Sometimes, we don’t realize how very badly our words hurt, and other times we miss how wonderfully amazing they can be to the hearer.
Just like Suzie probably had no idea the impact her simple statement had on me. (Well, now she does!)
Let’s set our mouths to speak life! We reflect Christ when our words are an offering of love and kindness to those around us.
And above all—
“Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ…
Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.” Colossians 4:2-3, 6 (ESV)
Christy Pearce is a wife, stay at home Mommy of 3, writer and speaker. Her passion is to proclaim God’s truth and make Jesus known! While Christy admits that she is far from perfect, she desires that Christ would be preeminent in all she says (writes) and does. Her blog, “Faith Like Dirty Diapers,” was born out of God using every day events—even a diaper change—to strengthen her with words of life.