Proverbs tells us that death and life are in the power of the tongue. I’ve experienced this from both sides. I’ve cowered beneath words like a whiplash, and I’ve wiped the joy from my child’s eyes by abrupt, impatient speech and a harsh tone. Likewise, life-giving healing has been spoken over me, and I’ve uttered what nourishes and comforts.
The fully fleshed out Beloved Life speaks love. Words and ways of speaking alike say, “I am dearly loved, and so are you. I am valued independent of how I perform, and so are you. I am worthy in my status as beloved, and so are you.”
I am far from arrived in this way of living Beloved. I’ve dismissed and belittled with my tongue, I’ve sought gossip to falsely elevate myself while devaluing another, and I’ve used my humor to tear down rather than uplift. In so doing I reject my own belovedness and deny others’.
The good news is that time and prayer can train and tame the tongue. As I seek to turn my words from bitter and broken to whole and beloved, silence can be a refuge. I seek quiet when gracious words will not rise. It is a step along the journey, to seek to not do harm on the way to speaking healing. And as I steep myself in life-giving Words, they will come faster to my lips.
In your words today, how can you sound more like the Beloved? How can your words call others Beloved?