Words have Power
By Bishop Gary Mueller
The Book of Genesis describes how God created the earth, all that is on it, and humanity by uttering words.
Throughout history, the right words have brought hope in the darkest moments and the wrong words have brought hatred and destruction.
This is not just an observation about life. It is personal. You have experienced countless times how your own words have made a far greater difference for good or ill than you ever imagined possible.
Sadly, we live in a time when the destructive force of words far outweighs their ability to make a positive difference. This inescapable fact confronts us every day through social media, our political discourse and, in a very personal way, our deeply divided United Methodist Church.
If this trend continues, the consequences will be devastating.
When words are weaponized, the practice says far more about those who utter them than the people they are speaking about. The words we choose provide a window into our soul. The choice of words that tear down, divide or inflict harm points to the reality that we are fundamentally out of kilter with God.
This means something personal and powerful. When we choose words we know will harm others, it is not acceptable to say that we do not mean what others clearly hear us saying. In fact, it only makes things worse. Quite simply, we need to come to grips with the fact that we need to repent.
But there is hope. The Word of God, Jesus, has come to transform us from the inside-out with a word of grace that forgives, heals and makes new.
May we so feast on this Word, that our words reflect the life God makes available to us far more than our own insecurities, self-centeredness and fear.
Bishop Gary Mueller, vice president
General Commission on UM Men