Encouragement for Today - June 20, 2011


T. Suzanne Eller

June 20, 2011

Word That Heal
T. Suzanne Eller

"The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit." Proverbs 18:21 (NIV)

I was searching in my husband's sock drawer when I found a familiar thick white envelope. I put on my glasses, sat at my vanity and started reading.

Tears followed.

"Dad, you are my hero." Ryan penned these words the day my husband, Richard, finished graduate school. The words in the three pages revealed a young man who was not afraid to open his heart and let his dad see inside.

Reading the letter once again made me want to write a letter to my son. I wanted to tell him that I remembered when he was a little boy and he offered drive-by kisses as he ran past. I desired to tell him that when I was an exhausted mother to three toddlers his lopsided smile and Kermit the Frog belly laugh made me happy to be a mom.

I longed to tell him that I remembered when he walked behind me, trying to gain my attention with "Mom, Mom, Mama!" I wanted to share that I was sorry when I wasn't as patient as I should have been.

Most of all I wanted to let him know how proud I was of him as a man and how I saw many of the same beautiful traits of his father emerging in him.

Why do we leave such precious words unsaid? Words that heal. Words that share the way we feel. Words that become treasures one day when words are all that remain.

Today's key verse from Proverbs 18:21 reminds us that the power isn't in the tongue as a muscle, but in the words that fall from the tongue. We often talk about the negative words we should hold back, but what about the words that we can freely offer to those we care about?

Those are powerful words, indeed.

Dear Lord, scripture is filled with words that remind me of Your love. May my tongue be used to affirm, to encourage, to lift up, and to share simple words that say "I love you" to the treasured people You put in my life. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Do You Know Him?

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The Mom I want to be: Rising above Your Past to Give Your Kids a Great Future by T. Suzanne Eller

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Application Steps:
Maybe you are unsure of how spoken words might be received, especially if they are rare. Share those words in a letter. Write a note to your loved one. Share one thing that you love that they do, or about who they are to you. Share a treasured memory, or a moment when they brightened your day.

Leave it somewhere unexpected — in a lunchbox, on a pillow, taped to a steering wheel.

Kind words do not cost much. They never blister the tongue or lips. They make other people good-natured. They also produce their own image on men's souls, and a beautiful image it is. — Blaise Pascal

Power Verses:
Matthew 12:36, "But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken." (NIV)

Matthew 12:37, "For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned." (NIV)

© 2011 by T. Suzanne Eller. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 31 Ministries
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Originally published Monday, 20 June 2011.