Monday, April 20, 2009

The Power of Words

I'm a writer, which makes me weird, I suppose. But, God made me this way for a reason. He gave me a love for words, love for creating, a stubborn will to keep going with my writing when it looked like I’d NEVER be published—and a heart for Him.

He also gave me the desire to take the gifts he’s given me and do my best to make something beautiful, to create something that He can possibly use to change someone’s life for the better. Or to make someone stop and think and say, “Wow, I’ve never thought about God like that before.” Or, “I didn’t know God loved like that, I want to find out more about Him.”

I get so many reader emails thanking me for writing good clean, entertaining stories that they’re not embarrassed to read in front of their children or friends. And I thank God everyday for the privilege to serve Him in this way.

So, anyway, back to words. I was sitting in church Sunday and the pastor talked about our responsibility as Christians to spread the word of God. He quoted a man by the name of John Piper who said, “What would the world be like, the home, the church, the school, the town square—if words were used the way Jesus used them?”

Think about your words. Why does it seem like it’s easier to say something negative rather than something positive? Why is easier to cut someone down, slander someone’s name, rather than to build someone up and offer encouragement?

Now think about this. You’re on the receiving end of harsh criticism. Blasted for not doing something right. Something you tried your best to do and maybe you fell a little short. How do you feel? Lousy, right? Shot down, your self-esteem takes a beating. Well, when we let our tongues run loose with no self-control, we have the ability to change a life forever. I don’t want to be responsible for that kind of change.

On the other hand, think about how you feel when you’ve attempted to do something and still fallen a little short. Someone comes up to you and thanks you for the effort you’ve put forth then says, praises your efforts and then says, “Would you like a little help on the rest of it? I can see you’re having some trouble, tell me what you need.”

A no-brainer as to what Christ would say, isn’t it?

As Christians, we are to go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit and teaching them everything I have commanded of you. How are we to do that? We use our words. As my pastor said this morning, "We are to gather with the disciples, to drink in Christ’s love then we are to go. To speak of His love. We are to speak of grace and truth, purity and power. We are to imitate Christ Jesus. We are to change lives, not through our power, but through the one who equips us.

A simple concept, isn’t it?

But how often do we live it?


Ramona Richards said...

I love this message, Lynette, especially right now. I've been following Susan Boyle's story, and I'm amazed at how many people want to rip into her instead of celebrating her success. I have never understood why people choose to be negative. Our words, our gift from God, have the ability to hurt or uplift, and I love this reminder of it. Thanks.

Lynette Eason said...

I just watched Susan Boyle for the first time on youtube today! Wasn't she absolutely incredible? And I know what you mean. Thanks for your input. God Bless.