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I am sure you have heard someone say, “You are going to eat those words.” It may sound like a mere phrase to us, but in reality we do eat our words. What we say not only affects others, but it also affects us.
Words are wonderful when used in a proper way. They can encourage, edify and give confidence to the hearer. A right word spoken at the right time can actually be life-changing. (See Proverbs 15:23.)
We can literally increase our own joy by speaking right words. We can also upset ourselves by talking unnecessarily about our problems or things that have hurt us in relationships.
Not too long ago I had a disappointing situation take place with someone I considered to be a close friend. I noticed that each time I talked about it, I would have a difficult time getting it off of my mind for the remainder of the day. I finally realized that if I wanted to get over it, I was going to have to stop mentally and verbally going over it again and again. People kept asking me about the situation out of genuine concern, but I ultimately realized that I had to answer, “It is better for me if I just don’t talk about it.”
The words that come out of our mouth go into our own ears as well as other people’s, and then they drop down into our soul where they give us either joy or sadness, peace or upset, depending on the types of words we have spoken.
God desires that our spirit be light and free so it can function properly, not heavy and oppressed. We can learn to choose our thoughts, to resist wrong ones and think on good, healthy, and right ones. I have often said, “Where the mind goes, the man follows.” And it could also be said that where the mind goes, the mouth follows!
When we understand the power of words and realize that we can choose what we think and speak, our lives can be transformed.
God has given His children a new nature, and we are taught to daily renew our mind and attitude. Having a positive outlook on life and speaking positive words based on God’s Word is one of the most wholesome things we can do.
When you get up in the morning, if there is something you need to attend to that day that you’re not looking forward to, you can say, “I dread this day,” or you can say, “God will give me strength today to do whatever I need to do and to do it with joy.” Which of these two statements do you think would better prepare you for the day?
As we have seen, we eat our words, and we can rightfully say that they are food for our souls. Anyone who wants to be healthy is careful to choose quality food that will provide good nutrition. If we want to be healthy in our soul and spirit, we should also choose to take in words that will build us up and increase our peace and joy.
I believe there are many good things happening in the world and probably there is more good than bad. But the evil is magnified in a way that often seems overwhelming. Turn on any news station or buy any newspaper or news magazine and you will find it filled with reports of murder, theft, wars, famine and all kinds of horribly tragic events.
We want to be well informed of what is going on, but to talk about world problems excessively or with no purpose merely creates a gloomy atmosphere that nobody will enjoy.
I recently walked into a room and heard a group of people talking about several businesses that had recently filed bankruptcy. Then they mentioned two others that they had heard were going to file bankruptcy. I felt a gloom hanging in the atmosphere so I said, “Well, God is not bankrupt and He is on our side.” Everyone agreed with me and immediately, the atmosphere changed.
I am not suggesting at all that we deny reality, but we can choose what we talk about. Instead of feeding ourselves a steady diet of “bad news,” we should choose to read, watch and talk about good things.
We talk a lot and quite often pay no attention to what we are saying, let alone think seriously about the impact of our words.
If we are honest with ourselves, we may find that some of our bad moods are directly linked to our conversation. Even some of our problems can be linked to bad choices we make about what we say.
I want to encourage you to take some time and think about the types of things you usually talk about. What kind of conversation do you enjoy and participate in?
Your words may not be the cause all of your problems, but they can cause a lot of them and they should be given a good deal of consideration when we are looking for answers to the problems we encounter in life.
We all have challenges in life, but we can make them better or worse by the way we talk about them. I don’t believe we can change all of our circumstances into pleasant ones by making positive confessions, but I do believe many of them will change according to God’s will. I simply want to teach you to be in agreement with God and learn to say what He says.
One thing is for sure, speaking negatively could hurt you and speaking positively never will, so why not go with the positive and see what kind of results you get?
This article is based on an excerpt from Joyce's book, Change Your Words, Change Your Life.