I love words.
Ever since I was a little girl … sitting in Mrs. Dombrowski’s first grade classroom … I have loved words.
I might have been just a wisp of a girl with blonde ringlets cascading down my back … but I instantly realized the power of words one day when she placed “Little House in the Big Woods” in my tiny hands.
Ever since that momentous day … I have loved words.
I can’t exactly explain it … but at that inexperienced age of 6 years old … I knew that words held power.
I discovered that words could give life to imaginary people and cause them to become my dearest of friends.
Even though I didn’t know much about life beyond my one room schoolhouse in a tiny little town tucked away between cornfields … I understood that I could travel through time simply by learning how to read.
I loved the way that words fit into the pocket of my heart and caused a swelling to take place there.
No one else saw it but me … no one else experienced it but me … but I knew that I was rich indeed because of the value of a single word.
I treasured each word that I learned to read like a piece of Turkish delight that would melt not on my tongue … but it would melt enticingly upon my thirsty soul!
As the years have gone by, I have graduated from Dr. Seuss … to Laura Ingalls Wilder … to Louisa May Alcott … to Shakespeare … and now to great theologians.
And do you know what?!
When I open the cover of a book … I still experience the same thrill that I did in that little wooden desk over half a century ago.
Words have the power to create and the power to destroy.
Words have the power to bring the mundane and commonplace to a platform of consequence and influence.
Words hold the raw potential of an artist’s brush … they are able to display the unmatched genius of a rare masterpiece in literary format.
Often, these days, as I read a portion of Scripture I become absolutely undone by the meaning of the words which the Holy Spirit has chosen to communicate the breath and the heart of God toward His people.
“That He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man …
“So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, and that you, being rooted and grounded in love …
“May be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth … and length … and height and depth …
“And to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God!”
Don’t you feel as though you have just stood on the vista of the highest and most rugged mountaintop and have gasped at the gorgeous scenery below?
Isn’t your heart magnificently filled to the brim with the unmatched authority of the words of Paul and the Holy Spirit?!
Words can rain down refreshing drops of water causing vibrant growth … and then they develop a glorious harvest where formerly there were only dying dreams and yesterday’s unfulfilled hopes.
Words can strengthen the mortal soul.
Words have the exciting capacity to deposit health in diseased attitudes and minds.
Words have the tenacity to stir up renewed vision in a discouraged heart that was only capable of sorrowfully looking back toward the unchanging past.
Words change lives … words restore … words inspire … words revive … words celebrate!
Often, in my lifetime, I have wondered what the most powerful word in the English language might be.
Is there one word with supreme power?
Is there a list of “Top 10 Words” that make the final cut?
What is the most powerful word known to mankind?
I suppose that we all have our favorite words … but I wonder which word holds the most inherent power?
Is it the word “hope”?
Certainly a word with the perpetual impact of “hope” is a top ten finalist, wouldn’t you say?!
To me, wordsmith that I am, hope means “believing with my whole heart that the goodness of God will invade my circumstances”.
Perhaps one would argue the word “faith” is the most valuable and life-changing word in the English tongue.
The faith of a little child … the faith to move mountains … the faith to partner with God … the faith to heal … life-changing faith in God!
Paul and the Holy Spirit … although they are certainly in agreement that “faith” and “hope” are among the top 3 words ever uttered … these two prolific writers, one divine and one human … present a four-letter word for our consideration.
“But now faith, hope, love abide these three … but the greatest of these is love.” – 1 Corinthians 13:13
You are at your most powerful when you simply love someone … did you know that?
The most persuasive, life-changing, restorative words you can ever speak are simply, “I love you.”
When you demonstrate love to a person who is different than you are … it is in that defining moment you become most like Jesus.
After all … Jesus came to earth and chose to love us even when we were drastically different from Him!
Hope is valuable … faith is irreplaceable … but love makes all the difference.
“And to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God!” – Ephesians 3:19
Do you hear the words of Paul, in partnership with the Holy Spirit, echo through the centuries?!
When you know the love of Christ, you are filled up with all the fullness of God Himself!
How is that even possible?!
How can I, a mere human being, hold the fullness of the Creator of the universe in my miniscule existence?!
This incomprehensible miracle is only possible when I know His unmatched love!
Love … the greatest force and the most engaging word ever spoken.
Thanks for listening to my heart this week. As you know by now, my heart is truly not a perfect heart but it is a heart that is filled to overflowing with gratitude for the life I have been given and for the people who walk with me. And, it continues to be a heart that is relentlessly chasing after God and all that He is!
Republished with permission from Blogs.crossmap.com, featuring inspiring Bible verses about The Value of a Single Word — Carol McLeod Ministries.