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continuing the convo – words

December 15, 2008

  This week we talked about James 3:2-12 and the power of words spoken by us and to us.  Two thoughts that have been rattling around in my head since (an awesome) Sunday…

1) What comes out of our mouth is a direct result of what’s in our heart.  Your words are such a big deal to God because He’s after your heart.  For instance…

  • Criticism and negativity come out of a heart lacking joy or full of bitterness.
  • Gossip and cursing come out of a heart of hatred and jealousy.
  • Boasting and self-pity come out of a heart of pride.  Boasting says, “You should admire me because of what I’ve done.”  Self-pity says, “You should admire me because of what I’ve suffered.”
  • Lying comes out of a heart of falsehood.

If you want to know if your heart is right before God, start by asking if your words are right before God.

2) Our words are powerful.  I usually think of things like gossip, exaggeration, criticism, boasting, or self-pity as “small sins”.  No big deal.  “It just popped out of my mouth!”, right?  In reality, words have destructive power to split churches, dissolve marriages, end lives in suicide (happened 3x while I was in Student Ministry), and drive people away from saving faith in Jesus.  But what if we harnessed the power of our words for God’s mission by speaking these phrases instead…


  • I believe in you.
  • You are making a difference.
  • God has forgiven you.
  • God used you in my life.


Here’s my challenge for The Bridge – If you think any of these phrases and they’re true, ALWAYS SPEAK THEM.  If we do that, people will be healed by a culture of grace and Spring Hill will stand up and notice.

Help us out – what is the most powerful thing anyone has ever spoken to you?

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Marlene permalink
    December 16, 2008 9:09 pm

    Great sermon on Sunday…we often forget that our words can cut like a knife and leave painful scars. On the other hand, words spoken with God’s love and grace have power beyond our comprehension.

    Some well spoken words that have never left me…

    “God has already lived all of your tomorrow’s..He knows exactly what you need…TRUST HIM!

    Josh – You have made a difference in our lives!

  2. josh permalink
    December 16, 2008 10:57 pm

    That means a lot to me, Marlene. It’s an honor to share life with you all.

  3. Susan Howerton permalink
    December 17, 2008 11:26 am

    I agree with Marlene… it was a great sermon but they all seem to be so powerful to me lately. But what this also left me thinking was what a powerful example we are to our children and they listen to us even when we don’t know they are. They are picking up our habits and any positive or negative words or attitudes we express. What an awesome opportunity and privilege it is to take that opportunity with our words to mold them into loving, grace-giving, selfless servants just through our words and example. If I want my child to look for the best in people, be positive, and encouraging in Christ then I have to model that (and believe me I don’t a lot of the time). Our words and actions must always match what we profess to believe (even in private) or we have really blown our chances to lead people to Jesus. This is very convicting to me and yet forgiveness is just a prayer away…. and a new start and the chance to follow the example of Jesus in my words and actions.

    Powerful words spoken to me…

    “If God calls you to it He will equip you for it.”

  4. Scott permalink
    December 17, 2008 1:00 pm

    I love you – spoken by Marianne
    Let’s start a church in Spring Hill – by Rick Howerton
    You are singular – Mrs. Campbell – 9th grade teacher
    You can do about any job you want – Career assessment advisor
    All have sinned – Paul
    I am the Way – Jesus

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