Words that build up

Today's Guest Blogger is Julie Danielson. Julie is a wife and mom and loves taking care of her family. She writes regularly on her blog More of Him. If you'd like more information on dealing with Anger, check out these great resources.

Have you ever been concerned when you hear other parents speaking negatively about their child? I’ve had that experience and it just makes me cringe inside, for both the parent and the child.

I understand how devastating this can be as I grew up with a parent that ridiculed me privately and in front of others. It has affected me in so many ways, even to this day, and I struggle with the feeling of being somehow defective and unlovable. As Proverbs 12:18 says, “There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” When I became a mother, I wanted to use my tongue in wise and healing ways.

When I first became a mother, I didn’t understand about using my tongue wisely. A lot of the very things I said I wouldn’t do, I did. However, with God’s help, I kept working at letting those negative comments never leave my mouth. I saw such changes in my children as I did this! I really did see them blossom under the light of positive reinforcements instead of withering under the darkness of negative comments. I saw my children feel more secure about trying new things and feeling confident as they ventured more and more into the world as they grew up.

One of the things I’ve learned through my years of being a mother is to not focus on the small issues. None of us is perfect and it’s really better to let the little, negative things go, if they aren’t harming our children or others. I have really tried to speak blessings over my children and focus on the things they are doing right, rather than what they are doing wrong. I never have wanted to aggravate my children because I didn’t want to discourage them (Colossians 3:21). My husband and I have worked very hard to make our home a place of love and peace for our children. The world can be very harsh at times, but our sons have always known that they could come home and be loved and find refuge.

One Scripture that always comes to my mind is Proverbs 14:1 – “The wise woman builds her house, but the foolish pulls it down with her hands.” It’s frightening to think that I could pull my own family down with my own hands by not speaking kindly or being difficult to be around. How encouraging that I can build it up, though!

Many times I have gone to the Lord in prayer asking for wisdom of how to handle a situation. Sometimes when our children do things, that we can see could have dire consequences down the road for them, we can over-react because of fear and say things we shouldn’t. These are the times I’ve gone to God and asked for the words to speak and for help in stopping my tongue when it could be wagging just a bit too much in the negative direction! I can honestly say that God has always helped me and I’ve been able to speak words that build up instead of tear down.

H. Jackson Brown, Jr. said, “Live so that when your children think of fairness, caring and integrity, they think of you.” I can think of no greater qualities to aspire to as a parent!
©2013 Julie Danielson

What do you do to keep a positive attitude with your kids in the midst of the challenges of parenting?

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  1. Julie. Thank you for your blog post. This is a great reminder for all of us. Well said! --Scott Turansky