Carrie's Relationship Tips
The Power of the Spoken Word
Years ago I learned something simple and profound from a young woman who had been involved in the homosexual lifestyle and had come out of it successfully. She said one thing lacking in her life were the spoken words identifying her as a little girl. She heard more things like, "You are a tom boy", or nothing at all. From that time on many years ago, I made a decision that my words would correctly identify male and female so I could help spread truth. Very soon, I had the opportunity to "speak" into the life of a neighbor girl, who not only acted like a tomboy, but she also swore like a trucker! We set up a repentance system, so that when she swore, she had to go home, then come back after 30 minutes. If she then asked for forgiveness, and then she could happily play again with our five kids. Of course, she fumbled often, but soon she learned her words mattered. I also began calling her a pretty girl and she even came to church with us. After a few weeks I gave her a dress, and she wore that dress for weeks! She continued to be very athletic, but she eventually stopped swearing and soon gave her life to Jesus! Lest we forget, God spoke everything in to being, including male and female in Genesis 1:26-28, and we are to continue His legacy.
Still not sure of the power of the spoken word? ...How did the enemy get Eve to sin? He spoke to her in Genesis 3:1 saying, "Indeed has God said, 'You shall not eat from any tree in the garden'?" The enemy challenged God's word first. When God spoke to Adam about his sin, He said in Genesis 3:17 "Because you have listened to the voice of your wife and have eaten from the tree..." Adam chose to sin, but just look at the influence Eve had in her speech and we have in our words! I believe the power of the spoken word creates a transaction in our lives, and even in the spiritual realm.
My zeal for this simple reality is even greater today. In ministering and teaching on relationships and sexuality for over 22 years, I have seen hundreds of lives literally changed through the power of the spoken word. I am arrested by it!
Here are a few of the many ways I practice telling the truth with my mouth:
- When I address a group of boys and girls, I call them...boys and girls. Ok, not rocket science but also not "guys".
- When I am speaking to Jr. High and Sr. High students, I call them "young ladies and young men" or ladies and gentlemen. I help them identify who they are, and the kind of behavior I expect. "Guys" does not elicit the same response. Young women need to hear who they are, so they will stop trying to prove they are female by revealing their bodies (yes, there is a connection), and young men need to have manhood defined in many ways in an overly feminine culture. "Guys" is gender neutral, and has no power.
- When I am speaking to parents, I also prefer ladies and gentleman.
As a woman, I can't tell you how many times when I am in a group setting, I am called a guy, and I'm actually surprised when someone says 'ladies'. So a friendly challenge, try not saying "guys", and instead use the power of your speech to bring clarity to a very confused culture. For more on the power of the spoken word, you can download a powerful free message entitled Power of the Spoken Word.