Words Matter

Over the years I've attended 25 or so weddings, not including my own. All had at least one common thread: the words "I do." Every bride and groom responded in the affirmative when posed the question, "Do you take ______ to be your lawful wedded (husband/wife)?" No exceptions; both my wife -thankfully-and I also answered in the affirmative. When it comes to weddings, "I do" matters. Saying "No" or "We need to talk" aren't moving the ceremony to its anticipated conclusion. Now, if only "I do" guaranteed a successful marriage but, alas, it takes more than two words to accomplish this.

If people only knew the value of their everyday words, vocabularies would instantly change. "That just tickles me death" may sound harmless but who really wants to depart this life by tickling? " I'm scared to death that....." are words which give permission for fear to harass, torment-even cause death in the one whose tongue is producing the fruit of death, rather than of life (Proverbs 18:21). Apparently God takes words pretty seriously.

There are ditches on both sides of any topic you want to name: eating, exercise, diet, cleanliness, dress, to name a few. The same is true concerning our words, those things which we say on an everyday basis. One ditch is to say anything you want; the other is devoid of any humor whatsoever. Pharisees love this side, for sure. While there's certainly a balance, the Bible says much about guarding what comes out of our mouth.

For myself, if the Bible has something to say about words, I want to hear it, then do it.

As over simplistic as it may sound, words matter-and not just in weddings. Words matter in everyday life.  Words are containers; they contain faith or fear, love or hate, belief or unbelief. The words we speak can bless or curse, encourage or discourage, build up or tear down. And it's always by our choice.

Do you really believe that you'll get the flu? Do you really believe that money runs out before the end of your month? Do you really believe that so and so will be the death of you? Then why permit those words to take root in your life? If God's Word can take root in your life (Mark 4:20), then so can other words, but in a negative way.

I'm not saying that we can't tell a clean joke or gently tease someone once in a while. What I am saying is that the importance of our words is something worth learning. Not just the importance of speaking God's Word, but those words we speak in everyday life.

Check out your words to see how they can be improved, in content and/or tone. I did, with measurable results. I haven't arrived yet, but life is better. Who's willing to do the same? Who's willing to ask God for His help in being a greater blessing to the world around you?

Now, do I really believe that, with God's help, this is not only possible, but well worth it?

I do.