Sunday, August 21, 2011
My favorite subject in school is…
If you guessed that your Aunt Sarah’s favorite subject in school was English, you are right! It was a fairly obvious answer, wasn’t it? I love words.
It’s a strange obsession, but I can confess it freely: I really love words. It’s ironic, isn’t it, since I’m not usually talkative? But it’s true. I don’t know why, but I love, love, love words. I love looking for just the right word for a given sentence; I love writing about a word until I really have a grasp of what it means; I love the smell, the flow, the stain, the permanence of ink; I love paper (oh, Lord, I love paper!); I love writing, even if I have nothing to write.
Words are powerful. As the Proverb says, the tongue has the power of life and death. I think that includes the written word, also. Words can build, edify, and bring life. With words, you can convey your earnest hopes, your deepest fears, and your greatest ideas. You can encourage. You can speak the truth. You can persuade. You can give the gift of hope, of simply expressing to someone that you are there for them. Words are a blade that can cut through the disillusionment of our culture and bring clarity to those around us.
And much the converse, unfortunately, words are also a blade that can cut a person down. Words have the power to discourage, deflate, and destroy. Sometimes we are careless with our words (and I hope we can all offer each other grace for those moments), but I sincerely hope for each of my nieces and nephews that you will learn to bridle your tongue—to speak truth, hope, and life.
May your tongues and pens be filled with life;
May you refuse all that would tear another down;
May you, above all, speak (and write) the truth in love.
All my love,