Words can hurt you and the right words can help heal you. Those words that crush and hurt you are known as toxic words. Toxic words are incredibly dangerous not only when they are spoken to you, but when you speak them to others. This week you will read from God’s Word about the dangers of toxic words and the power of life-giving words.
How are toxic words infecting your life right now?
I have learned that my toxic thoughts are still making me really hate myself. I have not yet learned to love the parts of me that aren’t the “best” or the things that happened to me. I need to learn to love ALL of me. The toxicity of my thinking causes me to continue to condemn myself for all the things I do wrong.
Really I am doing ok. But…..sometimes my thinking gets me in trouble. I know this happens for a lot of people. I have gotten to the point where I can forgive others for things they have done to me. But can I forgive myself? Simple answer is no. Why is it that doing for others and forgiving others and not hurting other is so much easier than doing all that for myself? Why do I feel that I deserve less than that? Do I really need to hurt myself like this now instead of using my old “physical” ways of hurting myself?
Toxic beliefs and words are deep rooted in me. Things I didn’t realize that were still “fresh” in my mind like….you aren’t really smart enough. You are fat and ugly. You will never be anything. You can’t do that. You are still dealing with THAT? You can’t possibly have someone love you. and on and on…… you catch my drift?
“Sticks and stones can bruise your body for a few days, but words can scar your soul for a life.” Words are powerful beyond our imagination.
Here is what Craig Groeschel writes in his book, Soul Detox, “Decide the destination of your mind. Any time your mind drifts toward dangerous thoughts. Do whatever it takes to get the trash out of your mind. …You are not a victim of your thought. You have the power through Christ to take them captive. As a result, you will find what you are looking for. You can believe the worse or think the best. You can find reasons to worry or reasons to have faith. You can live pessimistically, or you can possess life-changing faith.”
The power of godly works can revive, heal and change our lives. Ungodly words have the power to bind, imprison, and destroy.
Creative words create.
Destructive words destroy.
Hurtful words crush.
Helpful words build up.
Toxic words poison.
Soothing words heal.
Faith-filled words bring life.
Faithless words bring death.
Obviously I can’t control the words that come out of the mouths of others. But I can control how I let them effect me and what I believe. I need to guard my heart more. I let words of others really impact how I feel about myself and who I am. There is one person in my life that I realized just today that has had that such impact on my life. She doesn’t even know it. And I just realized it. She is my sister. The one person I wish to love me doesn’t. She seems to find fault in just about everything I do. I know it’s not just me that she hurts with her words and actions. I see what it does to my mom. To her children. To her husband. I am not claiming that I am perfect by any means. I have done my share of hurting her feelings and saying bad things too. Now that I am more aware, I have been choosing my words more carefully. I love my sister but I don’t think the feeling is mutual. She doesn’t speak to me but maybe once or twice a year. And then, there is so much tension in the room, you can cut it with a knife. I have tried to reach out but get nothing in return. No response. Nothing. Lord, I am trying. But this street is a two way….I don’t know what else to do.
God says, “You are not who others say you are. You are who I say you are.” I need to listen more closely. I need to hear what God is saying to me. The constant bombardment of my thoughts in my head don’t lend me to HEAR God much these days. I need to find peace. I need to let go.
“When someone says something to or about you, train yourself to categorize the words the same way we train our kids with a game our friends taught us, Truth or Trash. Analyze the message and source before swallowing and digesting what someone else wants to feed you. Are their words true? Based in Scripture? Supported by data over time? If so, embrace them. Allow those life-giving words to minister to your soul and conform you to the image of Christ. If their words are untrue, mean-spirited, and critical without being constructive, then call them what they are – toxic waste. Reject those words. Don’t let them into your soul Take out he trash and leave it by the curb. Delete toxic words and insert the truth.” (p. 717)
I need to give myself some life affirming statements. More. I need more. I am not the trash talk that people in my past and a few in my today make me out to be. I have the ability to choose what I want to believe. I choose to believe that God created me for a purpose. Not sure what that is exactly yet. But I know He has one for me.