Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Choosing one's words

It's been a while since I've shared a Henri Nouwen meditation with you. This morning, Linda Cole sent me the following:
Words are very important. When we say to someone: "You arean ugly, useless, despicable person," we might have ruined the possibility for a relationship with that person for life. Words can continue to do harm for many years.

It is so important to choose our words wisely. When we are boiling with anger and eager to throw bitter words at our opponents, it is better to remain silent. Words spoken in rage will make reconciliation very hard. Choosing life and not death, blessings and not curses often starts by choosing to remain silent or choosing carefully the words that open the way to healing.
This is a very important message. I know I have failed in following these principles more times than I'm happy remembering. If we all learned simply to keep silent in tense situations, we would be less likely to speak in ways that harm others.

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