I am often amazed at what comes out of my mouth. I will be the first to admit that I complain too much and respond too quick. I often forget the importance of the words I choose when speaking to people. I will sometimes find myself griping to a friend over how difficult my day has been or muttering under my breath my frustration at my child’s temper tantrums. I very often use my words to complain or grumble rather than have meaningful conversations that are filled with thanksgiving and joy! Sadly, sometimes these conversations can take up an entire coffee date. Oh how I walk away from those times wishing I had been more intentional with my friend.
Have you ever known someone in your life whose words were like medicine to your soul? I have been lucky to know some people like that.
While Paul was in prison he wrote a letter to his friend. He talks about how his friend had given him great joy and encouragement, because his friend refreshed the hearts of others.
“I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ. Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints.” ~ Philemon 1:6-7
I love how Paul uses the word refreshed. It reminds me of a room that is all stinky, and then someone opens up the windows and doors, lights a candle or two, and all at once the room is fresh. There have been many times when my heart was stinky, and a friend refreshed my soul by reminding me of Christ. Often, when my friends just simply share their faith, meaning, share with me how they are trusting God with their lives- I am refreshed in my soul. I am able to remember the good things God has done for me and be grateful. I am encouraged to turn my life back towards trusting God again. Being in that position gives me great joy and encouragement.
I am finding it more important these days to be a woman who refreshes the hearts of my friends. This means using my words as medicine for their souls and pausing long enough for the Spirit to speak through me. What I say does truly matter. As I reflect on using my words to build others up, I am able to engage in conversation that helps encourage people rather than bring them down. Ladies, we have such power to use our words for great things. We can choose to refrain from gossip, speak of the good God is doing rather than gripe about our long days, and praise each other rather than use our words to hurt one another. I am being strengthened and reminded by God’s word that His will for me is to delight in refreshing the hearts of my friends. Using my words to admire others, admonish them, encourage them, and remind them of God’s deep ocean of grace does as much for my soul as it does for them.
As bloggers, we can also be reminded that our words matter and they reflect our maker and heavenly Father. Let’s use them to bring laughter, refreshment, and joy to a hurting and often very serious world!
Tiffany Cutcliff says
Thanks Alessandra! It can be so tough in the midst of things to remember the bigger picture for me! 🙂
Alessandra Ferguson says
Great post, Tiffany! This is a great reminder for us all. I have caught myself many times and have had to ask, am I really bringing the atmosphere up or down? Great reminder!