Friday, April 27, 2012

DEVOTION: 25,000 Words by Shirley Corder

The other day I was reading a book when I learned that on average each of us speak 25,000 words a day.

Proverbs 18:21 tells us that our words matter. "Death and life are in the power of the tongue."

How true. Recently I went through a time of real trial and hardship with a dear friend  whom I had known since she was a new baby.  We worked together, laughed together, shed tears together, and got through a load of work. We were there for one another, and encouraged each other as day by day we made our way through all we had to get through.

We only had limited time before she would leave the country and fly off to her home thousands of miles away. The days seemed to fly by, and we both became pressured as we raced to finish the task. As time grew short, so did our patience. Although we both attempted to stay loving and understanding, eventually the inevitable happened. A thoughtless comment. An insensitive response. An angry retort, a hurtful email, a defensive phone call --and a relationship lay In ruins.

Time ran out. There was no time to apologize. No time to heal wounds. No time to explain misunderstandings. Only two hurting people with no clue how to repair the damage - and an ocean between.

Ephesians 4:29 says "Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear."

Let NO corrupting talk.  The word used for "corrupting" literally means "rotten", as in decaying food. In this passage we are told not to ever use words that will break down or harm a relationship. Words that will cause decay. We are not to use them under any situation. Not in hurt. Not in self-defence. And certainly not in anger.

As you look back over the past 24 hours, how many of your 25,000 words could fall into the category of corrupting talk? How many did you use to build others up?

As writers, I doubt if any of us ever write 25,000 words in a day, but those we do write--do they build up? Or do they corrupt? Let us decide now, today, that we will do all we can to build up others with the words we use, whether in writing or in speech. "Death and life are in the power of the tongue"(--or pen) Prov 8:21.


  1. My husband swears I use more than 25,000 words in a day and I reply that he uses about 5,000 and only half of them with me. Seriously, I do try to keep my blabbering on the positive side -- although I've been known to have internal dialogue that's more caustic.
    Thanks for your post.

  2. Yes Alice, my husband doesn't believe I'm limited to 25,000 words either! But then, who's counting? It's what we DO with them that really matters I guess!

    1. Good post, Shirley. I think we all forget the power of our words, both spoken and written. Good reminder! :)Marcia

  3. Bless your heart Shirley, for being so transparent in your sharing. Thank you for the reminder that unlike our written words that can be deleted so easily, our spoken words can never be unsaid. I am reminded of Col.4:6. "Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned, as it were with salt, so that you know how to respond to each person." God bless your days.

  4. Great post Shirley. Words are powerful as is silence.