Oh, the potential power of a metaphor. Amazing how a seemingly unrelated example can often provide a “lightbulb” moment to awaken someone to a really important truth. Jesus used them all the time. (Check out the red letters in the Gospels if you don’t believe me.)
As I have thought and shared about the life-changing impact of affirming words, I’ve often used the analogy of a watering can. The water that comes from a watering can helps plants to thrive, just as our words of encouragement can do in another’s life.
Our words can express what’s “right” about a person and stop a negative soundtrack that might be on repeat in another’s head.
Our words can nurture growth.
Our words can remind another of who God created them to be.
Our words can help a person see unique gifts, talents and character qualities that they minimize or don’t even see. As the old saying goes: “When you’re inside the jar, you can’t read the label.”
Our words can renew a person’s hope.
Our words have tremendous power to make a positive (and negative) impact. The big question is whether we truly grasp that and are intentional about using our words for good on a daily basis.
Recently, I was musing about the astounding reality of hydroelectric power and the fact that moving water can actually generate electricity. A LOT of electricity.
And then I had a lightbulb moment of my own.
I remembered a visit to Niagara Falls in my youth and the breathtaking beauty of those falls. At the time, I didn’t realize the tremendous amount of electrical power that was harnessed at that miraculous site. (Enough to power 3.8 million homes!)
Maybe Niagara Falls is a better metaphor for the potential impact of our words! We are the only living creation that has been given this wonderful gift. Think about the impact that affirming, encouraging words have made in your own life. Really think about the difference that you can make today and every day with the words you speak and write.
A gift that costs you nothing can make a tremendously powerful impact in others’ lives.
Let’s be intentional, today and every day, about using our words to make a beautiful difference to the people in our world.
Think about Niagara Falls.
“A person’s words can be life-giving water.” Proverbs 18:4