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During my recent illness, I was inspired by the kind words and “shout outs” of encouragement to me when I read The Scruff, LHP’s social media page. Thanks goes out to Lindsay Brazier for making this happen. The words written by my co-workers from various departments were words chosen to not only to encourage but also to express gratitude for many acts of kindness over the past year.  They all made me feel better.

Words can inspire and words can destroy.  Rabbi Yehuda Berg said, “Words have energy and power with the ability to help, to heal, to hinder, to hurt, to harm, to humiliate, and to humble.” The great Psalmist David spoke these words to his God: “Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight.” Over the years these simple but meaningful words prayed by David have been my guiding moral compass as they have for many of you. I believe that the words I speak and that I write have tremendous power, both in my own life and in my relationships. Because of this belief, I try to always speak and write to encourage and uplift others.

Winston Churchill said, “Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak, courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.” Of course, none of us are perfect in expressing our feelings to others. Every now and then we slip with unkind words.  However, we should always try to use words that build others up and not tear them down. Harsh words and comments are not easily forgotten. Words that edify rather than criticize will inspire. Words that are spoken in love and truth– not twisted by your own desires and expectations–and that boost one’s confidence will build up a generation of people who respect each other. This is  true in any business or community.

So, as David prayed, our prayers to God should have a similar expression. Where I have spoken words that are negative or harmful about anyone else, forgive me. Keep me from saying things that hurt or cut others down in any way. I want to be kind with my words and have the tongue of the wise that promotes healing and blessings. Help me to have such faith in your Lordship over my life that I can do all things without murmurings and disputing. Help me not to speak negative things about myself. And every time I start to say a critical word, help me to stop immediately and keep a lid on it.

Kind words can lift the spirit. Hateful words can dampen the spirit; so choose your words well. Never Give Up! Never Give Up! Never Give Up!

By Chaplain Ghosten