I sat stunned in front of the computer screen as grisly images of the bombing aftermath played out. Bodies twisted. Limbs missing. Blood splattered across the concrete sidewalk, like paint spilled from a carelessly flung can. Captured photos and footage reveal the moment of terror and lifetime of recovery. Every single scar would be a reminder that they were the victim of another person’s heartless action. Hatred acted upon. Would beads of sweat instantly form across their scarred skin whenever they heard 4th of July fireworks puncture a darkened sky. While other clapped with glee would they feel for a leg that was no longer there?
I thought of those who planned and carried out the attack, knowing that the damage would be lasting and even fatal. I thought of how our lives are so different, and also how they are the same. What if words left wounds you could see? What if my words, directly spoken with bomb like intensity, left gaping holes and shrapnel wounds? Have I left scars of sarcasm of those who happened to be at the right place at the wrong time? Our words leave wounds and scars that no one sees yet they are just as damaging as an explosive device detonated in a crowd.
Words shouted in anger and bitterness left unresolved and unclean often become infected and create more harm than the original wound. The impact is felt by innocent bystanders.
If we could see the fresh red flow from the wounds of our words, would we live differently? How would the lives of others be affected? Would others who inflict wounds on us feel more than a dismissing annoyance at our cry?
If we really want make a difference in our world, it needs to be done one word at a time. Choose your weapons wisely.
Words can wound and destroy. Words can nurture and encourage.
How will you use your words today?
Peace. Hope. Love.
“A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.”