Words have so much power. They can be the defining point of change, realisation, and perspective in a person’s life. The words that we speak can have the power to create what kind of world we experience.
In the movie ‘A Cinderella Story’, directed by Mark Rosman in 2004, there is a pinnacle moment or classic turning point in the movie where the main character Sam (aka Cinderella) had given up and was resigned to live the way she always had.
When a guitar clock gets knocked off the wall, it reveals her dad’s favourite quote under the ripped-up paint—“don’t let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game”. It was from the power of these words that Sam suddenly allowed her world to begin to change.
This scene reminded me once again that words have immense power. We can see this power at the very start of the Bible when God spoke creation into the world: ‘And God said, “let there be light,” and there was light’ (Genesis chapter 1 verse 3). Words have the power to bring creation into being and our words have the power to create how we see our world and how others see theirs.
The wrong source
Before Sam’s ‘turning point’ moment, she let the words that her stepmother, stepsisters and peers speak over her define the type of world she was living in and ultimately who she was. She saw herself as an outcast and loser because that is what others told her she was, and eventually it was also what she began speaking over herself. Thus, her world was created by these words.
I often catch my words. When I think or say something bad about myself or ponder on where my life is heading, I can often find myself in a negative slump. It is in this moment I pause and think ‘What words am I listening too?’ Am I listening to people who have only said negative comments about who I am? Or am I listening to society telling me what kind of a person I should be and how to live my life? Why am I giving those words the power to create how I view my life?
In the movie you can see people around Sam who speak words of encouragement and truth over her, but for Sam it is easier to believe the negative that has been spoken over her then to take in the truth of who she is. So often is this the case for us as well. Taking control of what we allow and do not allow spoken over us is a healthy habit to develop and it is in the practice of catching the negative words and thoughts, that help to develop this habit.
In Proverbs there are many Scriptures about the power and effects of words, “Your own soul is nourished when you are kind, but you destroy yourself when you are cruel,” (Proverbs chapter 11 Verse 17). This is why it is important that we are listening to the words God says rather than what the world says.
Who has the power?
When I gave power to the words of others that were negative, hurtful, and discouraging, I started to view myself as who they told me I was. It made my world look like everything was out to destroy me and made me feel like a victim rather than a victor.
When I started to intentionally make a decision to choose what words I was going to listen to, as well as what words I was going to speak over myself but also over my friends and family, I kept this Scripture in mind, “Kind words are like honey – sweet to the soul and healthy for the body” (Proverbs chapter 16 verse 24). This reminded me of the importance to speak kind words into the world so as to give power only to them. It is true also for the words we use in our thoughts.
As I find myself living in a world that is often controlled by fear, anxiety and doubt, I know that I can start to bring a change simply by asking myself ‘What words are creating my world?’.
As I continue to develop the habit of catching my words and thoughts, as I allow encouraging words from friends to settle in my soul and reflect on who God says I am, then my world and the world I live in starts to change. It becomes a life with endless amounts of opportunities, surrounded by those who believe in me, and any obstacles that come my way are always conquerable because I know who I am in God.
The Bible tells us to think on good things, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things” (Philippians Chapter 4 Verse 8).
Let us start to change the way we think and speak over ourselves and others. Let’s create a world for ourselves and others full of kindness and God’s love by speaking out good, godly words and start to change the perspective in which you see your life.
Elise Williams lives on the Sunshine Coast with her family. She has a Diploma of Business and is currently studying a Diploma of Library and Information Services. She is passionate about God and has quite the creative streak. She has a heart for others and strives to encourage others to know God’s love and to understand how beautiful and valued they are in God’s eyes.