Matthew 12:35 (New International Version)
A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him.
There once was an insignificant piece of gravel in the middle of a busy highway in the province of Ontario, Canada. It was no wonder it didn’t think very highly of itself. People would zoom by it with their cars just like it was a piece of junk that nobody wanted, the force of the wind they created making it roll around the road. Compared to the smooth, black-asphalted highway that people highly regarded as their main travel way, it was completely ignored. If only he could be like…a windshield, yes, a windshield.
Windshields seem strong and beautiful. Motorists constantly stare at them with apparent admiration . . . THEY certainly don’t ever seem to go unnoticed!
“If only I could be a windshield!” the piece of gravel sighed out loudly.
“Why?” the asphalted highway underneath it ask.
“Then I would be admired instead of being ignored!” it answered. “Windshields can resist high winds. Nothing is stronger and more beautiful than a windshield!”
As soon as it said this, a vehicle ran over it, and it found itself propelled by the back tire of that car. “I am flying! I am flying!” he exclaimed excitedly. Then it slammed into the windshield of the next car.
To its amazement, the windshield that had seemed so strong shattered!
Suddenly the piece of gravel didn’t feel so insignificant. It could shatter the mighty!
The words that we speak can be just like that piece of gravel. We think their impact is insignificant. However, the words of criticism, negativity and discouragement that can be propelled from our mouth can make even the mighty crumble.
“Can’t you do anything right? Get out of here!”
These words are disastrous to the ears of kids and adults alike.
What we say reveals who we really are. It reveals our true personality. It tells others our innermost memories and contemplations. Jesus knew the impact of words and clearly warned us:
What do YOUR words tell about you? Let’s Listen to ourselves today and learn! Are our words always constructive, uplifting, and encouraging? We can change the impact of our words by starting to rely on the One whose every word made a difference in other people lives; The one who forgave those who crucified him while he was dying; The one who reached out to others while he was hanging on a cross, even promising eternal life to the thief on the next cross.
Dear Lord we pray today that we would watch the words that we use. We want our words to build up those around us rather than tear them down. In Jesus’ name, Amen.