What's something someone has told you that has STUCK in your mind? Perhaps it was a coach who encouraged you with a compliment... or a teacher who said you were an outstanding at math.
Hmmm... maybe it was a sibling who told you that you weren't smart (that's putting it nicely)...or a parent who got frustrated and said something negative.
Here's the point: whether it was positive or negative, these words stuck with you and have affected you. Perhaps it's in the way you view yourself or what you believe is possible for yourself in the future.
A story that comes to mind...of a freshman boy, new to town, who was considered nerdy and weird by his peers. Aaron was quiet and awkward. Kids would pick on him. Well, one day, Eric, one of the popular kids, noticed Aaron walking home with a tall stack of books in arm...and then witness him drop them across the sidewalk.
Guess what the Eric did, while his friends laughed? He went over, helped Aaron gather his books and said with a smile, "wow, that's why you're smarter than me...I must be forgetting to bring home some of my books."
Well, fast forward to graduation, Eric was sitting with the seniors about to hear his friend, Aaron give the valedictorian speech. Aaron painted the picture of his freshman year...and said that he wouldn't be standing on stage if it wasn't for Eric. BECAUSE, that day he was walking home, he was going to commit suicide - and didn't want his parent to have to bother cleaning his locker.
Wow, can you imagine?
Are your words building up those around you... or tearing down? Be honest with yourself. As a leader, rising up in society... I challenge you to:
- Encourage others
- Steer away from gossip
- Stand up for the quiet voices (and those younger)
- Claim/speak truth over your life (God's word)
- Stay silent when angry, until you're cool and collected
Reach out. Every single person MATTERS. Do your part to let your peers, and the young ones watching you, know that! It could mean their life.
Now, look at the picture of the innocent child below. You and I were both that little kid at some point. At that age we didn't know how to tell ourselves that negative, hateful comments were lies. Doesn't this break your heart? Every day this happens though.
I believe in you! You are a responsible person with a bright future! Speak positively and you will reap the benefits at some point. It all comes back around.
"Death and lief are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit." - Proverbs 18:21 (And believe me, Fruit is a very good thing.)