Well of Life
The mouth of a good person is a deep, life-giving well, but the mouth of the wicked is a dark cave of abuse. (Proverbs 10:11)
Words matter, don't they? When was the last time someone spoke encouraging words into your life and you just felt like they had inflated an emotional "flat tire" inside you? Words can build up, or they can tear down - the course of our conversation is important to consider each and every time we open our mouths. Yet, how many of us actually consider our words BEFORE we allow them to come forth? If you are like me, hindsight is really great, but foresight as it comes to my words is not always that 'clear'!
God's intent is for our mouths to be deep, life-giving wells - that doesn't leave much room for the frivolous words, much less the hurtful, demeaning, critical, or angry ones, does it? Don't get me wrong - not every word we speak needs to begin with "God this..." or "God that..." - but our words should not create wounds. That said, there are times our word will ring 'true' in a person's ears, but they will have 'hurt emotions'. Why is that? The words might have brought some form of conviction into another's life without you even knowing it.
We aren't in the business of bringing conviction, but when we speak from a life-giving well, there will be times when the words just 'strike center' in someone's life. They will sting a bit, but they won't leave a gaping wound. They will actually bring the relationship closer and create a sense of awareness of the love within the relationship. I have had my closest friend speak something to me, revealing to me just how selfish or prideful my behavior may have been, but that didn't tear down the relationship. It revealed to me how much the relationship matters and that my behavior needed some adjustment.
Truth often convicts - truth in love doesn't tear down - it creates a platform from which growth may occur. Words matter - but always let them be framed in love, not hatred, anger, or arrogant pride. When we learn to consider our words, asking the Holy Spirit to act as a guardian of those words, we are less like to speak from a 'bitter well' and more likely to speak from a 'well of life'. Just sayin!