By: Mae Lewis
How do you change your life?
Change your language.
There is a powerful truth that what comes out of your mouth has the power to change your life. For good or bad, your spoken words have the power to transform your life.
You can change who you are by changing your language. A key aspect of personal identity is the language you use to talk about yourself. If you change your language, you actually shift your identity.
How do you describe yourself? If you are the sort of person who is always putting yourself down – “I’m so ugly,” “I’m so fat,” “I’m worthless,” etc., you will come to believe that about yourself. Not only will you come to believe those things about yourself, you will act accordingly. You are actually creating your identity by the words you say about yourself. And, when someone insults us, or puts us down, one of the worst things we can do is agree with them! Something as simple as “Maybe I am a loser like he says” is deadly to your spirit.
You can create your present identity and shape your future by the words you choose. This is true of your past also. You can actually transform your past by how you speak about it. You are the owner of your experiences, and you can choose to do whatever you want with your experiences. By choosing how you speak about your experiences, you can transform your past into a thing of value. Even the most difficult and traumatic experiences can be transformed into something that serves you, and not something that holds you back.
Dr. David Schwartz wrote a book called, The Magic of Thinking Big, in which he addresses the language we use to talk about our past, present, and future. He said that “people can either speak castles into existence, or they can speak themselves into the grave.” When you define and speak your problems, your pain, your grief, you are actually strengthening that as part of your identity. Are your words building you a castle? Or are they digging you a grave?
Before you dismiss this as some sort of self-help psycho-babble, let me remind you of a few things:
Man was created in the image of God. (Genesis 1:27)
God created the universe by SPEAKING it into existence. (Psalm 33:9, Genesis 1)
God gave man a powerful ability to build up and destroy with his words. (Proverbs 15:4, Matthew 15:18). We actually have the ability to “create” our world with the words that we speak.
We have the ability to encourage life, or to bring destruction with our words. The Hebrew word for tongue is lamed/ lashon which literally means “the rod that devours or establishes life.” Think about that for a moment. Words are incredibly powerful.
Consider all of the religions in the world. All spiritual power that is exerted by men is through the spoken word: Prayers. Incantations. Spells. Mantras. I would offer that the latter three are misappropriations of this incredible gift, but I give them as examples to prove my point: there is immense power in the spoken word.
Humans are able to move the spirit realm by the words that come out of our mouths. Yet, we carelessly speak death over our own bodies, we curse others, we curse ourselves.
We have heard much about the “power of positive thinking,” but I think that there is just as much to be said about the power of positive speaking.
You really have the ability to “speak life to the deadest, darkest, night”- to quote the lyrics of TobyMac’s song, “Speak Life.” To further quote: “Lift your head a little higher / Spread the love like fire / Hope will fall like rain / When you speak life with the words you say // Raise your thoughts a little higher / Use your words to inspire / Joy will fall like rain / When you speak life with the things you say.”
We know that we have the ability to encourage others with our words, but we often forget how powerful our own inner voice is to our own identity. Speak life to yourself. Speak life and hope and peace over your own life, and over your own identity.
Watch your heart and life heal and the trajectory of your life change as you begin to change your language.
By: Mae Lewis