Similar to the natural law of gravity, there are certain spiritual laws that may be difficult to understand yet they are true and important keys to victorious living. The power of words fall under this category.
Words are an excellent addition of knowledge and wisdom to our spiritual life. We can learn that words are much more than simple communication. When spoken in accordance with God's desires, they actually carry the power to motivate, inspire and change circumstances. Even though the name-it-and-claim-it movement distorted this principle somewhat, there remains the fundamental revelation that becoming a light of optimism and faith is associated with training our mind to think positively.
No matter what type of situation we might face, we do not have to surrender to a critical or defeated attitude. We constantly have the choice to be a refreshing fountain of encouragement, strength and hope, or we can be a critical septic tank of doubt, depression and despair.
The reason why God wants to change the way we think and speak is because he wants to change who we are. More than anyone else, he knows about the power of words because, according to the Genesis account of creation, he created the heavens and the earth by literally speaking them into existence.
For example, when someone declares they will always be poor, or the situation is impossible, we have just witnessed an agreement that has now been set in motion to be accomplished. Matthew 18 explains that if two or more shall agree, they will receive from the Lord and Isaiah. Chapter 57 talks about God creating the fruit of our lips. This spiritual law of positive and negative confession is found throughout the Bible and can produce blessings or curses. Many will consider this practice as childishly naive, but the spiritual principle of sowing and reaping is a spiritual reality.
The stories in the Bible are not just tales of giants, whales and fiery furnaces. They are graciously given to us as lessons that we might learn and incorporate spiritual understanding into our lives. By the way, there is more to being a Christian than going around telling everyone we are one. The goal is for people to notice how we act and observe Christ in us. May we be reminded they are especially listening to every word we say.
When it comes to words, James 3 talks about how small the tongue is and yet it has the ability to defile a person and those around them if not controlled. The taming of the tongue must come from an internal awareness and conviction, because the mouth speaks what the heart entertains and reveals the true identity of the person.
When we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior, the transformation process continues by asking God to take control of our life, and this begins with allowing him to change and renew our mind.
There is a true account about a young boy growing up Cleveland, Ohio, in a home to which he later described as materially poor but spiritually rich. One day a famous track-and-field athlete named Charlie Paddock came to his school to speak to the student body. At the time, Mr. Paddock was considered the fastest human being alive. His audience was captivated as he told the children to develop a vision of what they wanted to be and then to ask God to help them accomplish their goals.
This little boy decided that he too wanted to become the fastest runner on Earth, so he went to his track coach and told him about his dream and the coach replied, "It's great to have a dream, but to attain your dream you must build a ladder to it. The first step is determination, the second is dedication, the third is discipline, and the fourth rung is a positive attitude!"
The result of positive thinking and confessing was four gold medals, breaking the Olympic and world records for the 200 meter and holding the broad-jump record for 24 years. And who did this little boy grow up to be? Jesse Owens.
William F. Holland Jr. is a minister and chaplain based in Nicholasville, Kentucky. To read more articles and order a free scripture CD, visit billyhollandministries.com.