If words can never hurt us why is there so much made of someone's comments no matter how offensive? If words have no power why have wars been fought and lives been lost over words? The truth is words are far more powerful than anyone thinks. Most people can't recall the first time they skinned their knee or even a jammed finger but I would bet most would remember a name they were called in elementary school. I know we have all done it at some point in our lives, called a person fat, ugly, stupid or something derogatory and didn't even think about the effect that it had on the person on the receiving end.
The point I am driving home is our words are powerful. They bring positive and negative feelings and reactions. In the following passage James is speaking of the power of our tongue or words.
3 My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment. 2 For we all stumble in many things. If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle the whole body. 3 Indeed, we put bits in horses’ mouths that they may obey us, and we turn their whole body. 4 Look also at ships: although they are so large and are driven by fierce winds, they are turned by a very small rudder wherever the pilot desires. 5 Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things. See how great a forest a little fire kindles! 6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire by hell. 7 For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind. 8 But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. 9 With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the similitude of God. 10 Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so.
No matter whether it is a few people talking around the water cooler, or on a nationally broadcast radio talk show the power of our words is far greater than one would think.
This week before making that comment or gossiping about someone, think of the effect of your words.
Have a blessed week!