Words are a vital part of what we, as writers, do, so I thought I’d write about all the things they could do today. They are the smallest part of our craft. Words create sentences which create paragraphs which create pages which create chapters which create books. But they can also make us feel things. They can make us feel happy, sad, angry, disappointed, strange, bored, interested, encouraged, discouraged; the list of emotions goes on and on. They help us sharpen our imaginations by forming pictures inside our minds. If I read a book where the author has written a good description of his setting, I can imagine myself there and feel like I’ve traveled to a place I might not ever get to go in my lifetime. They are also a method of escape for me when I read as I can escape from whatever real life is throwing at me to enjoy the imaginary world of a book. In other words, words are the basic building blocks of everything we do in a society.
Written words are not the only words that are important though. Spoken words might be more important than written words because a lot of our communicating is done face to face. They can bring joy in one instance and then turn right around and bring sadness. From when we can first understand the spoken word, they help us form our concept of self. If the first words we hear are words that affirm us, we start on the path to becoming a productive person in society. But, if we hear words that demean us, that tell us we’re not any good, it doesn’t take much time for those words to take root in our inner being and become what we believe about ourselves.
So, words have power, power that I don’t think we realize sometimes. We realize when we are physically hurt whether we are ill with some kind of sickness or whether we’ve had some kind of accident like a broken arm or leg. Those hurts are visible and can be seen by whoever we come in contact with. But, words have the power to hurt us inside where the hurt is not as visible to the rest of us. We’ve all been hurt by words whether unintentionally or by bullying, and we’ve all been careless with our words and caused hurt. Words can form scars, but words can also heal. When I think of how I want to be with the words I speak or the words I write, I think of a verse of Scripture from my Christian faith.
Psalm 19:14 states, “May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.”
Hope everyone has a great day!
All of us can choose the words we use. We can choose to use words of kindness, words of affirmation, or we can choose to use words that harm, words that hurt. If you look at the two parts of that statement, you would think it would be obvious which ones we would use. But, in our society, things are usually not that obvious. So, back to the question, why would people choose to use words that harm or words that hurt. I think it comes down to three reasons.
The first would be that words that harm or hurt have been used by others towards the person that uses them, and the person uses those words to retaliate. It’s hard to “turn the other cheek” as the Bible says and use words of kindness instead of words that harm. Human beings have a natural tendency to protect themselves, and I think lashing out when people are cruel with their words is a part of that.
Another reason would be that people just don’t care. They are focused on themselves and whatever is right for themselves and other people are just an obstacle to that self-focus. There’s no reason to be kind to other people when that person is only seen as a stepping stone.
Finally, and this would relate back to the second reason, people have not been taught how to use kind words. When a person comes from a background where their parents are self-focused, it’s not hard to figure out they would not be taught to use kind or affirming words.
So, with all that, would there ever be a chance that people could be kinder to one another? I believe so. As I’ve shared in previous posts, my Christian faith is helpful to me in that regard. I believe other faiths have a tenet of treating people kindly as well. But, most of all, I’m not willing to write off the human race. I do believe we have the capability of using words of kindness and affirmation. We just need to be willing to do so.
Until next time, be real!