Thursday, January 20, 2011

a picture might be worth a thousand words... but what are your words worth?

"It is by words … [that] every being works when he works by faith. God said, ‘Let there be light: and there was light.’ Joshua spake, and the great lights which God had created stood still. Elijah commanded, and the heavens were stayed for the space of three years and six months, so that it did not rain. … All this was done by faith. … Faith, then, works by words; and with [words] its mightiest works have been, and will be, performed." -Jeffrey R Holland

That quote is from a talk called The Tongue of Angels given... I am not sure when. Later on the in talk Elder Holland says (quoting James 3:2-10) “Behold also … ships, which though they be … great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm.” Then James makes his point: “The tongue is [also] a little member. … [But] behold, how great a [forest (Greek)] a little fire [can burn]."

I remember coming across these passages from the Bible when I was in high school debate and thinking how true this was. Once again, while studying the Salem Witch Trials in my current American Lit. class I recall how true the words of James are.

Words, your words, are a powerful thing. They can uplift someone or break them down. Words start and end wars and lives.

Just because someone is powerful doesn't mean their words uplift (think Hitler, Stalin... you get the picture)and just because someone is meek doesn't mean their words can't lead (Moses, Paul, Gandhi, Mother Teresa)

Whether a person is a homemaker who raises the next generation or a corporate leader who makes billions, their words are heard.

Thinking about this makes me want to choose my words more wisely and more deliberately. I want to be more kind and less quick to judge, more uplifting and less jesting.

And now it's your turn to decide. What will your words say about you?