“Your words have power.” That is a phrase we often hear, but there are times when I wonder if we really believe it. Words truly have the power to create things, change things, and even shift things. They have the ability to harm or to heal. Words have the ability to lift or to break down. Words are powerful. Knowing this, a question that we have to ask ourselves is “what will we do with the words that reside within us?” I’ve often spoken about the seven mountains of culture: the mountains of arts & entertainment, business, education, family, government, media, and religion. Today, I’d like to take a look at one of these mountains (of family) to see how the power of your words can impact things in that sphere.
As I thought about this, my thoughts initially went to the prophet Jeremiah. Jeremiah happened to be a young man whom God called during a time when a strong word needed to be given to the nation of Israel. Jeremiah was told that his call as a prophet was to “root out, pull down, destroy, throw down, to build and to plant.” (Jeremiah 1:10) To some, the first three things might not seem like positive things that you might want to commit in relation to your family. Yet, they are.
As a father, I am responsible for many things. One of my responsibilities is to cover, guard, or protect them from those things that may be harmful to them. I guard their hearts against negative speech, lies that others may say about them, or any other thing that would cause them pain or shame. When my children come to me or my wife and say that a friend of theirs taunted them or said something hurtful, I have to be able to speak something to them that is affirming of their identity. In addition, I even pray over them that what was said does not become rooted in their memory. I am standing as a watchman over them so that the best things are the things they hold fast to.
Power of Your Words: Building Up
In other words, I use words of affirmation to root out, destroy, and pull down those things that are an offense to my family. This doesn’t always happen in an instant. It takes constant affirmations and words of consolation to then turn what was hurting or harmful to their self-esteem. As I do this, it automatically turns into building up and planting the new hope that needs to actually be present so they can grow into the bright and powerful people that God has created them to become.
You too have the capacity through the power of your words. We can shape the mountain of family, not just our own, but the culture of family. You do this as use words that affirm what family is and what God meant it to be. Also, how God designed it to be a reflection of the wholeness and unity that is in His own self; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. A family doesn’t have to be a functionally dysfunctional entity. Family can be a healthy, growing, thriving display of goodness and blessing for the world to be enriched by.
Moses said that the power of life and death are in the tongue. Thus, we must accept that the words we use can either produce life for our families or utterly destroy them. Look deeply into the words that you’re using daily. Then observe see how what you are saying impacts your family and the families around you. You have the ability to transform the negative into positive. That’s the power of your words.