Pearl Strachan Hurd once said: “Handle words carefully for words have more power than atom bombs.”
How many of us are even affected by words of strangers? We are in the marketplace, someone curses us. We curse back and our day is affected. On the other hand, someone compliments us, we feel good.
If words of strangers affect us, what more if it is from significant people. In the book, A Boy Called It, the boy, whose name was David, was a verbally abused child. He was told always that he was “useless.” Hence, because he believed these words, his life was affected. He was only able to heal when he was able to process this reality.
On the other hand, when a loved one says, “I love you,” look at the joy it brings.
Then again, if you think about it, how powerful can the words be if it is from the Lord?
In this Gospel of Matthew, the centurion knew that if Jesus would go to the house of a gentile, He would be ritually unclean. Hence he said, “just only say the word.”
Talking about the power of the words of God, three things we remember.
- Because God is alive and all-powerful, His promises are something we can hold on to.
“ I will never leave you nor forsake you.”; “Give and you shall receive.”; “Not even the gates of the netherworld will prevail over it.”
- Because God is alive and all-powerful, His teachings are still the way to go in this life.
“ Love for God and love for neighbor” is the greatest of all commandments. Remember parables and stories like Lazarus.
- Because God is alive and all-powerful, His warnings are something we have to take seriously. “Always be prepared you do not know the hour or the day God is coming.”
Hence in this Mass, three prayers for WORDS:
- May we be more prudent with our words, they can destroy, i.e. White lies, alibis, gossip.
- May we pray from the heart. Prayer is very powerful
- May we hold on to the Words of God, it is very powerful. It teaches, it guides, it comforts and yes, it can also condemn.