By Monsignor Anselm Nwaorgu
A professor was traveling by boat and as the boat set sail, he asked the sailor, “Do you know anything about Biology, Ecology, or Oceanology”?, to which the sailor answered, “No Sir”. Then the professor yelled out, “What on earth do you know then, as a sailor? You will die of illiteracy.“ After a while, a heavy wind developed, tossing the boat around, and the sailor made the situation look worse, using his expertise, and then turning to the professor asked him, “Do you know anything about swiminology and escapelogy from sharkology and crocodiology?”, to which the professor answered, “No.” “In that case”, said the sailor, “You are about to be eaten by sharks because of your mouthology and insultology”.
Scripture says: “The Lord GOD has given me a well-trained tongue, that I might know how to speak to the weary a word that will rouse them” (Isaiah 50:4). So, “let every word that comes from your mouth be such that it will edify those who hear it.” (Ephesians 4:29). The power of words is something we, as Nigerian families, need to pay attention to, especially when it comes to talking to family members and neighbors at large. Words matter and words are powerful. Words have the power to build people up or to tear them down; to destroy or to reconcile, to degrade or to inspire; to castigate or to uplift, etc. Words can create emotions and cause actions that can shape the course of anyone’s destiny.
When it comes to the self, it is important that you speak to yourself like someone that you love. Your words need to be positive, encouraging, motivating, uplifting, and capable of instilling belief and hope in yourself. Remember that your words become your world, for Scripture says, “The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us”. Let your words modulate your attitude and elevate your altitude as you go about the business of becoming.
When it comes to others, remember what Scripture says: “Kind words are like honey–sweet to the soul and healthy for the body” (Proverb 16:24). When you tell your spouse that you love them, or encourage your children, it may seem like no big deal, but those words have incredible power to nourish the soul. Your kind words can be the power needed to push family members into their destiny; to make them healthier and stronger; and to reduce the stress in your family. Life is not just about money, hard work, or accomplishments; it is also about kind words that create, nourish, build, encourage, and strengthen. People in our families need to hear how much we love them, how much we believe in them, and how great we think they are.
Therefore, let every word that is spoken by our mouths be words that uplift and never words that tear down; words that give others confidence in their abilities, lift them off the canvas if they have fallen, help them walk taller, and give them the capacity to do things that they couldn’t dream of doing by themselves. Family members should count on each member to be a healer, a lifter, and an encourager. Let us choose our words carefully before we speak because our words can create a life-time positive or negative memory in the minds and hearts of those who heard it. Words can be forgiven, but they are rarely forgotten, and even when people forget your words, they seldom forget how you made them feel.