(This is part 5 in the “Selfie” series. Read part 4 here.)
Words are the most powerful tool on the planet, and if you don’t believe me, ask a dictator. But I digress. First, a little ancient wisdom, then a little modern wisdom, as we look at what the dangers and opportunities are in a Selfie world.
You don’t have to be a believer (but I am) to dig these words of King Solomon, who scratched these out about 3,000 years ago:
“Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Proverbs 4:23
“The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” Proverbs 18:21
They say he was the wisest man who ever lived, although, like most of us, he did some pretty foolish things, too. But it’s hard to argue with his teaching, and in the world of self-talk, he was ahead of his time. Some pretty solid thoughts about how the stuff inside our heads guide the trajectory of our just about everything else.
Modern wisdom? A friend of mine caught my attention years ago when he repeatedly said, “Not on my farm!” It was his colloquial way of saying that he would bring intentionality to the words that were elbowing for his head space. To the degree he was able he would guide what got into his head and what wouldn’t. He is an incredibly positive person, despite circumstances which could easily lead him into dark thinking.
If you know me personally, you’d regard me as a positive, upbeat, engaging, interactive guy–and all of that would be true. But if you knew me well you’d know the places of self-doubt and insecurity which I constantly address, because I can only allow so many things on my farm. So, starting next time we’ll look at some real-life, helpful and proven ways to live on the better side of our words.
One For the Road
Want one more? From L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables: “I read in a book once that a rose by any other name would smell as sweet, but I’ve never been able to believe it. I don’t believe a rose WOULD be as nice if it was called a thistle or a skunk cabbage.”
See you next time.