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The Power of Words in a Digital Age

Nathan Castleberry
Nathan Castleberry Thursday June 28, 2018
<? echo $type; ?> The Power of Words in a Digital Age

There is something ironic about how we use social media. We tend to follow people who affirm our beliefs and opinions. I’d wager the same goes for most of our followers, yet we can tweet and update as if we are looking for a fight.

We are too easily caught in a riptide where our words’ primary function is to let our homogeneity of followers know what we are against. There are already so many boundaries drawn in our culture. What would it look like if we intentionally used our words to express empathy and encourage one another? 

Proverbs 18:21

Your words have more potential to hit a global platform now than any other time in history. Words are a social currency with power that can spark a movement. Words are weapons in the holster worn by the court of public opinion. Reputations are built with much time, but destroyed with few words. Whether it’s a meme, tweet, status, or caption, your words can garner tremendous influence if typed or spoken at the right place and the right time. Yet with all of this power, we are more negligent and impulsive with our words than the generations that have come before us.

Proverbs 18:21 tells us that life and death are in the power of the tongue and those who love it will eat its fruits. If this verse is true, then we have to understand the cause and effect relationship between our words and our reality. 

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I heard someone say taking back words is harder than scraping toothpaste back into its tube. Our Proverb teaches us we are left with whatever effect our words create. Whether it’s life or death, our relationships are what feel the impact the most. 

Use Words to Encourage

Dreams and goals can live or die by the words you speak or the words spoken to you. The way people in love speak to each can determine if their love endures or expires. Encouragement given or withheld could be the difference in someone finding the strength to ask for help. If we’re not careful we can miss the opportunities to use our words for help or healing, and that can be just as damaging as hurtful words. 

Words Carry Weight

As a kid, I didn’t play many sports. Music was more my thing. In the few seasons of baseball and football that I did, I do have a few memories. I don’t really remember the feeling of being tackled, catching and missing, hitting or throwing a ball.

However, I can remember the feelings associated with the voices of coaches and teammates who either doubted or believed in me. The life or death of my performance as an athlete was greatly determined by the words of those around me. In any environment you find yourself, at work, at play, in ministry, at home . . . your words carry weight. It will serve you well as a leader to leverage them for hope and restoration. 

Words From the Bible

I’ll leave you with a thought on the power of words demonstrated in the parallels within the stories of creation and Jesus. 

In the beginning was the Word. The Word was with God. The Word was God. It was the Word of God that created something from nothing. It was that very Word which would become Flesh and dwell among us. 

Have you ever stopped to realize that Jesus was the Word of God spoken at the dawn of time? When God speaks, life and light happen through Jesus. The Word of God created all. The Word of God is still actively at work to this very day as Jesus creates new life in hearts once dead in sin. 

My prayer for us today is that your words would be filled with the life and light of His words as the people we encounter would come to hear and know Jesus. 

Nathan Castleberry is husband to Erica and father to Declan and Adelaide. He serves as a teaching pastor at Mountain Lake Church in Forsyth County, Georgia.