Have the words that others have spoken over you ever significantly impacted you? Words can birth destinies on the inside of us and bring hope to our hearts for the future. They have the power to ignite our dreams and give life to our souls.
At the same time, negative words can stick with us. Long after they are spoken, they roll around inside our minds and confirm our worst fears—that we have little value.
“Death and life are in the power of the tongue, And those who love it will eat its fruit” (Prov. 18:21).
The words that we speak over ourselves and others are vessels of life or death. God spoke the world into existence, and it was. He made us in His image, which means that we have a God-given gift to release life in the words we speak to others.
The saying, “Sticks and stones can break my bones, but words can never hurt me,” couldn’t be further from the truth. God’s Word declares that words can hurt you, and the fruit of those words can follow you throughout your life, even without your knowledge.
This is exactly what happened to me. I walked through life believing that I was worthless. The decisions I made came from a place of feeling unworthy, unvalued and rejected. Rejection hurts. Feeling like you don’t belong or like you don’t matter brings pain.
Sometimes people speak words out of their own perspectives or experiences without the intention of hurting you. Despite their motives, their words still can powerfully impact our lives in extraordinary ways.
In Isaiah, we see another description of the power our words hold. “’No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue which rises against you in judgment You shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, And their righteousness is from Me,’ Says the Lord” (Isa. 54:17). This passage refers to the tongue as a weapon, but God’s heart always turns toward redemption. Just as words can negatively impact our lives, they can also bring the life of God into hopeless situations, even more so when we speak God’s Word over those situations.
You may struggle with the sins of your past. You may not be proud of some of the decisions you’ve made, ones that no one else knows about. The enemy, the devil, loves to tell you the lie that your sin is too big, too bad and that you are too far gone for God to accept you.
You may feel disqualified from the great destiny God prepared for you, unworthy of His love. But we find this powerful hope in our Savior: the blood of Jesus Christ covered your sins and made a way for you to come boldly to the Father’s throne of grace for help in your time of need (Heb. 4:16).
Sometimes we think we have to check off a to-do list before we can come to God. But Jesus already checked off the to-do list for you on the cross, where He paid the ultimate price for you. He took the punishment for every sin you ever have or ever will commit.
He made a way for the removal of anything that could separate you from the Father’s love, for reconciliation with Him forever. He purchased your freedom with His blood. When we come to Him in repentance and ask for His forgiveness, His blood removes every sin you ever committed—past, present and future.
The shame of your yesterday doesn’t hold a candle to the power of His shed blood for you.
Jesus’ love for you is so great that He was willing to die in your place. He is the lifter of your head and the one who breaks off all the shame of your past. “But You, O Lord, are a shield around me, my glory, and the one who lifts up my head” (Ps. 3:3, NRSV).
You are priceless, and God longs for you to come boldly into His presence and receive this extravagant gift. Tell Him everything—He already knows—and ask Him to forgive you and make you whole.
Before you move from this article, pray this prayer of hope as you seek Him with an open heart:
Father, I ask that You heal the pain in my heart from the past. Lord, bring me freedom. Your Word says, “Let the weak say, ‘I am strong’ ” (Joel 3:10). I pray that Your strength would be perfected in my moments of weakness (2 Cor. 12:19). Lord, please release life over every season through which I have walked. You are the healer of our hearts and the mender of our souls. If any shame lingers from my past, remove the sting of it and give a double blessing for every moment of trouble I encountered. Father, thank You for Your forgiveness. Thank You that Your blood has covered and washed away every sin. Give me the strength to receive Your forgiveness and let go of the past. You are a faithful friend, the Redeemer. Cover me in Your love that restores. Thank You for taking what the enemy meant for evil and turning it around for good. In Jesus’ mighty name, amen.
Adapted from Hope in 60 Seconds: Encountering the God of the Impossibleby Cristina Baker. Copyright © 2022 by Cristina Baker. Used with permission from Thomas Nelson.
Cristina Baker is an author who is passionate to see people encounter the love of God and find hope in His Son Jesus Christ. She has a deep desire for people to find victory and freedom through the power of prayer.
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