The Power of Blessing and Cursing Is Yours

“Shut your mouth!” She said, as she whipped from the shelf toward the baby.

I stood still, feet planted and mouth agape, willing my body to move forward but utterly shocked by the woman’s words.

I didn’t want to be that mom, the one who stares at another judgmentally in the grocery store. But truth be told, I couldn’t help but wonder what made her think that kind of a response was appropriate to an 11-month-old’s cry.

And just as quickly my face flushed red as I remembered all of my less-than-gracious responses to my own daughter and husband as my patience grows thin and words rush to my mouth.

I’m not quick to speak, but when I do, my words come heavy, and I’m afraid they’ll carry the same weighty consequence words had in my childhood as well. A curse on those who hear them.

I wish it wasn’t that way.

But words are more than mere syllables of sound: they are windows into the heart.

Because

“Out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks.”
~Luke 6:45

My words can be

hurtful,

prideful,

dismissive,

commanding,

demeaning.

And when they are, I need to do some serious heart-work with The Father, because those words signal that sin is spreading in my heart faster than the weeds in my vegetable garden.

The truth is that the power of blessing and cursing is in our tongue. With one small word we can wreck or build.

Because words also have the ability to give life, to speak blessing into a person’s future and over their present.

Words can heal.

Words can inspire.

Words can lift up the downcast soul.

Words can restore.

Because when God’s Word fills us, our words pour out and over like blessings into people’s lives.

When The Word indwells us, our words reflect the grace and love of the Person who directs us.

Standing in that aisle between the canned green beans and the corn, I bow my head and say a quick prayer. Fill me, Lord, to overflowing with grace. Not because I’m better than her or in a place to judge, but because sometimes words need to be whispered in a prayer rather than spoken out loud.

I look up, smile at her my lop-sided grin, shrug and say, “Tough day, huh?”

And I watch as relief washes over her face.

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Tonight is the first time we gather over at Kate Motaung’s place for Five Minute Friday. If you don’t know what that is, basically it’s a community of women who come together for five minutes of uninterrupted unedited unglamorized writing. And the results? Come see for yourself.