That their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, and attaining to all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the knowledge of the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ,
While reading a book together about Outreach Ministry, Mr. Richard and I came across a passage that talked about how words can build up or destroy a child or anyone else for that matter. The question was asked, "Do you remember when someone you loved or looked up to said something very demeaning to you ?" Immediately, I remember some hurtful words that someone very dear said to me and it brought me back to that moment and tears filled my eyes. Then the question was asked, "Do you remember when a person you loved and admired said some words of encouragement to you?" Again, I could tell you the place, where I was when my Dad told me that nothing was impossible for me to accomplish, the only thing that could hold me back from my dreams was me. In both situations, the words spoken to me were both heavy with hate and love. The weight of their impact is still staggering.
When we minister to children and others our words maybe the only encouragement they get that day. Having grown up in a household before Christ, I can tell you that until our family was saved, words were very critical and mean spirited most of the time. I was terrified to talk to people and kept to myself entirely, especially through my teenage years. I did not feel that I was worthy or of any value. Solomon says in the Bible in Proverbs 18:21,"death and life are in the power of the tongue."
The old adage "sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me" is just a defense mechanism for a wounded heart. I pray as I go through my days and the ministry that the Lord has given my husband and I to children of all ages that, I will remember the power of my words to encourage, love, lift up, to be the antidote of the ugly, hateful, discouraging things that are said to speak humiliating, lowering, discrediting phrases that only kill and destroy the spirit of those we live before.