(Presented by Lisa Bishop)

Have you ever thought about the choices you make on a daily basis? Proverbs 18:21 says, “Words kill, words give life; they’re either poison or fruit—you choose” (MSG).

You choose.

Now I know you are very aware of what it means to choose but here is a refresher. The dictionary definition of choose is, “​​To select from a number of possible alternatives; decide on and pick out. To determine.”

I want to share that definition with you because I think sometimes it can be easy to forget that you have the ability to be selective about what you say. All too often you can find yourself saying everything you think before putting your words through a holy filter. Minding your words takes intention.

Do your words—the things you say to yourself about yourself, the things you say to your co-worker, spouse, friend, neighbor—act as poison, bringing destruction and death to a soul? Or are your words life-giving to those who hear them?

In the workplace it can be all too tempting to have loose lips that spew gossip, criticism, and complaining. When you are with your friends you can easily fall into the trap of dissing someone who is not around and talking behind their back. Don’t do that. You do not want to be the person dragging others down with their words. And if you find yourself in a group that is getting their kicks by criticizing others, run for the hills. Refuse to join in. Words are a slippery slope.

In Luke 6:45, Jesus says, “A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.”

The words you say in your head and out loud reflect something deeper. They flow from what’s in your heart. If there is bitterness, greed, jealousy, pride, anger, superiority, or inferiority in your heart, your words will follow suit. But when there is love, joy, gratitude, peace, trust and confidence in Jesus in your heart, your words will be like fruit. Sweet and soothing to the soul.

At any given moment you have a number of possible alternatives when it comes to choosing what comes out of your mouth. Choose your words wisely and remember that today you have the power to decide if you will bring life to the people you interact with or death. Choose life.