40 Days of Words | Day 7

Dr Jim Brown's TruNorth Devotional
40 Days of Words
Day 7 | TREE OF LIFE | Proverbs 15:4

Proverbs 15:4
“The soothing tongue is a tree of life, but a perverse tongue crushes the spirit.” (NIV)

I enjoy trees. When I was growing up, we had several huge eucalyptus trees in our back yard.  They were WAY taller than our house and I enjoyed watching them and listening to their rustle when it was windy.  I enjoyed their fragrance and watching the birds nest in the branches way above the ground.

The Scripture uses many such everyday analogies which – although the Bible was written thousands of years ago – enable us to relate today.

Here, we are taught that our tongue CAN be like “tree of life”  to others. And a “tree of life”  is a metaphor referring to physical and spiritual renewal and refreshment.

Another translation says this verse like this:
“When you speak healing words, you offer others fruit from the tree of life. But unhealthy, negative words do nothing but crush their hopes.” (TPT)

So how would the people closest to you, rate your words? Encouraging?  Neutral?  Negative?

For instance, I just had coffee with a brother in Christ. We ended our time by talking about the 23rd Psalm.   As a pastor, I’ve had the privilege of quoting that psalm to countless people who were going through difficulties.  Some were at home and discouraged, some in the hospital… perhaps in the ER, perhaps readying for surgery. Some of the folks were dying.  In EACH case, that psalm brought peace and some comfort.

On the other hand, if I had chosen – instead of quoting the 23rd Psalm – to read the front page of the daily newspaper, how much peace and comfort would THAT have brought?

You get it.  Healing words are like a “tree of life.”  Unhealthy words “do nothing but crush their hopes.”

Prayer: LORD, help to learn well the difference my words make and help me to always aim to make my words soothing, healing and uplifting.  Amen.
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