The Pulse: The Words You Choose

May 16, 2022

“I’m rubber, you’re glue. Your words bounce off me and stick to you.” Did you ever hear or say those words on a playground? The idea is catchy, but not really true. Some words do bounce off of us, but other words tend to stick. Certain painful or positive messages can attach themselves to our mind like Velcro, and we don’t always get to choose which words stick to our soul.

What are some of the words (positive or negative) that have stuck to you? Review your top word list that replays inside your head as you make decisions, fail, or succeed. Where did you hear those words and how did they stick to you?

Consider the straightforward advice Solomon offered: “Words kill, words give life; they’re either poison or fruit—you choose” (Proverbs 18:21, The Message). Along the same lines, author and psychologist Kathleen Edelman encourages all of us, “Every word that you use is a word that you choose.”

What are the words you repeat to yourself? You may not have chosen all the words that have stuck to you, but you decide whether to keep using them. Become aware of the recurring words you use to describe yourself to others or when “talking” to yourself. Instead of allowing other people to select all of those words, choose words to describe who you are and who you want to be.

What are the words you use for other people? Are you sending any unintended harmful messages to people you care about—family, friends, coworkers? Your words can bring death or life; so, work to make your words good fruit rather than poison.

As children are developing their own sense of identity, the words we choose are especially important. That’s one reason, I appreciated my children’s experience at Pine Cove City Camp. Camp held lots of fun—laser tag, water slides, and competition—but it held much more. At the end of the week, a camp counselor intentionally chose words to attach to my children. These words were life-giving, powerful character qualities to celebrate and cultivate. Follow this link if you would like to explore camp for your child at GFC this summer, or click here to learn about volunteering at Pine Cove City Camp at GFC.

Words can bring life or death—which words will you choose today?

Titus O’Bryant
Teaching & Executive Pastor of Ministries