Thursday, August 12, 2010

Marshmallows, Bean Bags, or Bullets?

By Nichole Giles

Monday, on my other blog, I posted about choosing our words wisely. Today I’m still thinking along that same line. Words can be either tools or weapons, depending on your skills and your views. They paint pictures, pull heart-strings, and above all other things, have the ability to affect a person’s life one way or another.

Actions too, but I believe words can be stronger.

Soft, loving words, for instance, can open a heart wide enough for a whole entire person—or even several people—to take residence there. Kind words might give someone an ego-boost, or much needed confidence, or even give them the strength to do something brave and bold, to be more than they were before. Smart words will bring the speaker success in life, career, relationships, and other things.

Sharp words cut. They cut deep and leave large wounds that don’t heal easily, if ever. Lying words create chaos in one form or another, and never better the person who has uttered them.

Words, in themselves, are actions that have the potential to ripple out in the pond of life and create tidal waves.

It is our responsibility to know how to use our words, and use them well. We should incite emotion in our writing, yes, but also in our lives. How does your knowledge of writing affect the things that come out of your mouth? Or into an email or blog? Who will those words affect and how? What repercussions will come from the things you write or say?

Can you possibly bring peace to a ravaged person or family or entire country? Might you be able to comfort someone in need? Maybe you’ll inspire someone into greatness, or help them find religion, or some other form of spiritual awareness.

Or will something you say or write create a mutiny? A war? A dissention in the ranks? Will what you say cause a large organization to fall apart at the seams? And if it does, can you ever take it back? Make it better? Fix the damage?

Words are the most powerful weapons available to mankind. Everyone has them, and everyone uses them, though not necessarily always skillfully. And everyone—even the deaf—hears them.

This is why we study words in the same way a hunter studies guns. The difference, I think, is that the hunter buys a gun, knowing full well the risks involved. He knows that as soon as he pulls the trigger there is potential death.

Are your words marshmallows, bean bags, or bullets? And do you know the difference? If not, you should probably figure it out before you shoot.

And that is all I have to say about that.

1 comment:

Carolyn V. said...

I love this Nichole! I agree, we have to know what kind of words we are spreading around. They can be powerful things for both good and bad. =)