Strong… Only speak words that make souls stronger. -Ann Voskamp
I love the image of the woman blowing on a dandelion. It reminded me of my words going out… little seeds bearing life or death, a sword or honey, an apple of gold or poison. That is a sobering thought. It makes me want to speak much less, or not at all, but God has made me a verbal person.
I can be way too loose with words. I think out loud, and at times do damage because of content, timing, or presentation of my words. I can be quick to speak, and slow to listen. I am learning, and catching myself faster when words are blurting instead of being helpful. I have lots of opportunity to apologize, but I am working on being quicker with listening and sharing well chosen words that make others stronger in hearing them, instead of quantity of words that may, or may not be helpful.
The Listening Life by Adam McHugh was a super helpful book in this, as well as challenging for my heart. Listening to God and others is the key to speaking words that make souls stronger. “Hearing is an act of the senses, but listening is an act of the will.” Using words to ask questions and draw out another’s heart is a gift we give others and ourselves. As we listen and pray we have more opportunity to contribute strong life giving words.
Our listening allows the other person space to feel, and speak what is really going on. When we speak after deep listening, we can offer encouragement, direction, hope, and more. When we speak to change a person, alter their position, prove our point, or stop their emotions, we really miss connecting with them, and connecting them with the Giver of all life and truth who can strengthen and heal their soul to make it stronger.
* I am joining Five Minute Fridays in a 31 day Writing Challenge. Each day I will be writing on a different word prompt for at least 5 minutes for the month of October.
**Check out 2018’s 31 Day Writing Challenge https://inkblotlife.com/category/write-31-days-2018/
***So excited to be using Julia Dutton’s beautiful photography. Check out more of her work on Facebook @juliaduttonphotography or Instagram jiabethphoto19