I’ve heard it. You’ve heard it. We’ve all heard it: “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.” But of course, it’s a lie. A more accurate rendition might go something like this: “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words may forever hurt me.” We’ve been talking about the … Continue reading Sticks and stones
Words. They have power, don’t they? In the Bible, James writes: “With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be” (James 3:9-10). So if … Continue reading Your verbal legacy
Have you ever heard of someone getting their mouth washed out with soap? I’m guessing it’s not something that happens very much anymore, if ever. And that’s a good thing. But have you ever wondered why people did that? Among other things, it was a symbolic act meant to teach a child that their words … Continue reading Washing your mouth out with hope?
The presence and power of God are always around us—sometimes we just need the reminder. Let me give an example. Many of us say “goodbye” to someone when we part. A few years ago I learned that “goodbye” is from an old word “godbwye.” It’s a short form of “God be with you.” People used … Continue reading The power of “God be with you”
My wife and I are in a small group. We meet weekly with people from our church to talk about Sunday’s sermon, the Bible passage, and pray together. One of the real benefits is hearing other people’s insights and ideas. Recently we were talking about how easy it is to over-commit. For a lot of … Continue reading When is being nice a bad thing?
Right now I’m in a teaching series about how to be a person of your word in a world of verbal mistrust. [See the 50-second preview video here.] It’s generating a lot of interesting discussions. And in today’s devotional, I’d like to dig into something I’ll be talking a little bit more about this coming … Continue reading Your reliability can make an impact
Yesterday’s devotional was about being a person of your word. I said that people who keep their promises keep track of their promises. It makes total sense. If you’re going to be a person who is trustworthy and who keeps their promises, you have to know what they are. You need to keep track of … Continue reading A light, even in your words
Before the world of contracts and fine print, do you remember hearing about agreements that were made on the shake of a hand? Remember when someone could be trusted “at their word”? Nowadays, that seems rare. We live in an age of verbal mistrust. So many people break promises that it doesn’t even surprise us … Continue reading Can you remember what you promised?
What do you believe? Really? Not what you SAY you believe, but what you ACTUALLY believe? Sometimes you’ll hear it said that how you spend your time and energy is the true measure of your true beliefs. Why? Because it’s a practical demonstration of your actual priorities. But today I’d like to suggest something else: What … Continue reading The truth about what you casually say
You've heard the lie before: "Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me." The idea is that words—because they are invisible—cannot hurt us. But we know it isn't true. The put down, the threat, the lie that cuts deeper than a knife. Words can have a negative power. BUT... they … Continue reading Grace notes