Kind and encouraging words are valuable

Published 6:49 pm Friday, October 17, 2014

When my telephone rings I have no idea what I will hear from the caller.  Hopefully something pleasant or even exciting, but that is not always the case.

Like everyone else, I have had some words to come my way that were neither pleasant nor exciting.  Sometimes they were to inform of a tragedy or loss, and occasionally they were someone’s personal thoughts about me that were less than kind.

Life is surely filled with ups and downs, positives and negatives, and the words used in all of life’s situations have a strong impact on how we face the circumstances that we encounter along the way.

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I received one of those rare telephone calls last week that lifted me up and brought me joy as well as encouragement.  It was simple and short, yet a good reminder to me that even a few kind and encouraging words are of tremendous value.

The caller was a friend that I have known quite a number of years, although I do not see him nearly as often as I used to.  In the brief conversation he did not ask anything of me or express any disappointments with me; he merely contacted me to say hello and to make certain that we are still doing alright.

Perhaps that does not sound like a big deal, but it was at a moment; just being reminded that someone, from a caring heart, was willing to take time out of what was probably a busy day for him to express concern for me was a precious gift.

I have heard it accurately said that, “The most important things in life are not things at all.”  Thankfully God gives us moments when we are brought face-to-face with the reality of just how true that is!

The Bible reminds us of the value and impact of kind and beneficial words.

Several of those remarks are recorded in the Old Testament book of Proverbs.

We are rightly reminded that “An anxious heart weighs a man down, but a kind word cheers him up” (12:25, New International Version).  There are plenty of things in life that can produce anxiety, therefore, kind and cheerful words are of immense value.

Proverbs also states that “A man finds joy in giving an apt reply—and how good is a timely word!” (15:23).  In commenting on this verse, one modern writer had this to say:  “To say the right thing at the right time is satisfying; it requires knowledge and wisdom.  Even to say the right thing at the wrong time is counterproductive.”

We cannot control when tragic news comes, but we can choose at any time to convey an uplifting message to others.  Neither the postal services, telephone companies, nor internet providers charge extra to get your encouraging words to those you send them to; it costs the same to give a helpful message as it does a hurtful one.

Take a little time to lift someone up with your kind and encouraging words.  It will certainly be of tremendous value to them and it might come at a time when they most need it.

And when someone gives you a kind word, do not take it for granted.

Cherish it, be grateful and consider yourself blessed.