Prov 18.21 Death and life [are] in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.

Have you ever heard the phrase ‘Sticks and stones may break my bones but names will never hurt me”? While the original meaning may have been, “despite what you call me or say about me, I am going to”… fill in the blank. The truth of the matter is that words can either hurt or help; heal or do harm. The Proverbs are filled with passages that confirm this fact.

Listen to a few of these proverbs. Proverbs 15:1 A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. Proverbs 16:24 Pleasant words [are as] an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones. Proverbs 18:8 The words of a talebearer [are] as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly. Proverbs 12:18 There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise [is] health. Wow! The words that we say can devastate or delight people. As our opening Proverb stated, death and life are in the power of the tongue. God states this to be true and we need to believe it until it effects the way we interact with one another. I am not talking about the heretical use of words to “claim this” or demand that from God. I am talking about Spirit controlled, Scripture based communication. Unkind or cruel words have split marriages, friendships, families and churches.

Think before you speak. Especially if you are angry, depressed or tired. Why? Let God speak for Himself. For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same [is] a perfect man, [and] able also to bridle the whole body. Behold, we put bits in the horses’ mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body. Behold also the ships, which though [they be] so great, and [are] driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth. Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth! And the tongue [is] a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell. For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind: But the tongue can no man tame; [it is] an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.

Sticks and stones do break bones, and your words can help or hurt. Unkind, untrue or unclean words grieve The Spirit of God. Today, you and I will say a lot of things. May both writer and reader alike submit the words of our mouth and the meditation of our hearts to The Spirit of God.