Can you remember words that were spoken to you as a child – that still hurt today or can you remember words that were spoken to you as a child that really encouraged you. These words may have been said intentionally or unintentionally but after all these years you still remember, they’ve stuck with you. Maybe even leaving a scar.
Once there was a professional baseball player and a speaker who were ministering at a prison. During a break, the baseball player was telling the speaker about growing up as a boy. He recalled his dad telling him if he kept hitting the ball like that, one day he would play in the big leagues and if he kept throwing and catching the ball like that he would play in the big leagues. Then the baseball player said, and that’s where I ended up. There was a prisoner off to the side who was listening to their conversation. He spoke up and said, when I was growing up my dad told me one day I would end up in prison, and that’s where I ended up. Both fathers spoke into their kids lives, but one brought hope one brought hurt.
Everyday, each one of us are all planting words in the people around us, the question is, what should we expect to grow from those words. Hope or hurt?
If you plant an apple tree, what do you expect to grow? Apples! If you plant cucumber seeds, what do you expect to grow? Cucumbers! So, in theory if you plant love seeds, what should you expect to grow? Love!
(Cue up Smurf’s theme song)
La la la la la la, look at me I’m planting love seeds.
In reality, I know there is more to it than that, life is not that easy. If I walked up to a woman on the street and said “I’m planting love seeds”, first that would be just plain creepy, second that’s probably going to get me arrested at best, beaten up at worst.
When we speak we need to use wisdom, we need to remember that our words can heal or harm, but too often we don’t think about the cutting remarks we make to others, until maybe after we said them.
Proverbs 12:18 The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.
We need to learn to be careful about the words we say, especially to our kids. Poking fun at someone too much, making too many comments that aren’t uplifting, these might just become a self fulfilling prophesy.
Victor Serebriakoff grew up in the slums of London, while he was in high school he was called a dunce by a teacher, he was told to get a job and at least feed himself. He dropped out of high school and always saw himself as that dunce going from job to job, he eventually joined the army. While in the army he was given an IQ test and that test showed he was brilliant. He scored 161 out of a possible 161. He went on to write multiple books, he became a business man, created patents, he actually started creating IQ tests.
What changed? He wasn’t labeled a dunce anymore, he was now considered brilliant. He was finally able to see his real potential. What if he never received those words of hope, he would of died never realizing he was a genius all along.
It reminds me in the Book of Judges when the angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon and called him a man of war. Even though at the time he was threshing wheat in the winepress so the Midianites wouldn’t see him. Basically, he was hiding, some man of war he is. He went on, with God’s help, to wipe out the Midian army and to become a judge of Israel.
2 easy ways to change the future, speak words of hope or speak words of hurt to someone. With that you can literally change the future.
I encourage you with this, look to see where you can plant words of hope and healing in the people around you and see what grows.
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