As a writer and a preacher, I firmly believe that words have power. It's something I took to heart in a long-ago Sunday school class, when I learned that God said, let there be light (and water, and darkness, and plants, and every living thing), and there they were. God created all that, just by speaking. Words have power.
Occasionally we, too, speak a word that creates something: A couple creates a new family when they stand at the altar and say, "I do." A pastor makes a bold promise when she affirms, "You are a baptized child of God." A judge gives freedom by pronouncing, "You are not guilty." A parent builds self-esteem when he says, "I am so proud of you."
The Psalmist sees the effects of God's powerful voice everywhere. Could it be that at times through our words, God is still speaking -- and creating, blessing and building up? And if so, how might you use your words differently today?
Lord, may my words be careful, gentle, and kind, that they may create the good things you desire for my relationships, and bring you glory. Amen.
Psalm 29 (NRSV)
1 Ascribe to the Lord, O heavenly beings, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
2 Ascribe to the Lord the glory of his name; worship the Lord in holy splendor.
3 The voice of the Lord is over the waters; the God of glory thunders, the Lord, over mighty waters.
4 The voice of the Lord is powerful; the voice of the Lord is full of majesty.
5 The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars; the Lord breaks the cedars of Lebanon.
6 He makes Lebanon skip like a calf, and Sirion like a young wild ox.
7 The voice of the Lord flashes forth flames of fire.
8 The voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness; the Lord shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.
9 The voice of the Lord causes the oaks to whirl, and strips the forest bare; and in his temple all say, "Glory!"
10 The Lord sits enthroned over the flood; the Lord sits enthroned as king forever.
11 May the Lord give strength to his people! May the Lord bless his people with peace!