The Power of the Tongue

Summer Day 5

“The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences.” -Proverbs 18:21

The Power of the Tongue

One particularly stressful day, I firmly plopped my little guy down on the bathroom counter, looked into his eyes, and said, “Why do you have to be such a bad boy?”

I had no idea of the power of my words. As I lay on my bed that night, I talked to God:

Father, show me what it means to bless, and teach me how to speak life into my babies’ hearts.

What words have been spoken over me by others that I have received deep into my heart? Father, please show me your truth instead so I can replace these curses with the truth of your Word. Heal my heart so I can live well.

Depression hounded my family lineage for as long as I can remember. As a little girl, I knelt next to my bed, praying, begging God for healing and answers to our family curse. Years later, God answered me on that stressful day.

The answer came in the wilted face of my 3-year-old son as God whispered deeply into my heart, “Kara, the root of depression stems from verbal abuse. It traps both the one speaking and the one listening.”

My world stood still in the darkness that night as I inclined my heart to understand what God had spoken to me. For days, my heart repented. I grieved and mourned the damaging words I had spoken throughout the years. I searched Scripture to see if this was true, if I really was causing damage with my words, and here is what I found:

“Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.” (Ephesians 6:4)

“Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.” (James 3:10)

Dear mama, I’m writing you today to refresh your weary soul! I’m here to tell you what I wish someone would have shared with me years ago: there is a better way! Words shape and form your child’s identity. When you bless your child with words of love and encouragement, it will empower her or him to become what you speak!

Love needs no defense, not even words of defense. Be patient and kind; your child does not have power over evil, but you do! Show your child the way! Look beyond the behavior and see the pain of the child. Many people react because of hurt in their hearts. For example, if children feel left out, they may respond by destroying the tower they could not help build. Ask the Holy Spirit to show you what caused the behavior in the first place. Actions begin to change when children’s hearts feel ministered to and when the truth is spoken.

Go Deeper:

Rescue your children from themselves. Children are like adults in that, after we’ve had a bad day, isolation— like timeout for a child—may not help us feel better. What helps us moms rather than condemnation is for our husbands to hold us for a while or take us out for a treat. Apply this principle to your children. Sit down, open your arms toward them, and hold them close. Sometimes this may be enough, but other times you may want to add a change of scenery and go for a milkshake date. Reassure them of your love! Mom, let me tell you, this works!

What’s Next?

Father God wants to speak even more to you today, so take a few minutes, step into His presence, and let Him hold you. He knows your innermost pain and struggles. Let Him speak peace over your storms. He will tell you exactly what your babies need, but let Him fill your cup first. You get to choose life today. You get to love and be loved by the most forgiving and unconditional love a mom could ever know, the love of your Heavenly Father and your dear babies!

Don’t push away the moment; embrace it.

Scripture ReferencesDeuteronomy 30:19; Matthew 12:37; 1 Peter 3:9; and Proverbs 11:25.


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Kara Schrock
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18 Comments on “The Power of the Tongue”

  1. Kara,

    With tears in my eyes, I thank you for speaking this truth. It is exactly what this mama needed to be reminded of. Thank you for being vulnerable & sharing.

  2. Sometimes I tell my children that their discipline is to hug me. (Of course, this only occurs when the fruit of the Spirit flows out of me.) This provides me a concrete example of grace. Thanks for reminding me of the importance of the words I speak to my children.

    1. Hi Daphne, Yes! what a great example of Gods grace. To truly receive Love when we deserve punishment. Only possible by the power of the Holy Spirit. 🙂 Thanks for sharing.

  3. Thanks Kara ,this article makes me cry..It’s so beautiful and the truth,in my growing up years I/we children were yelled at and felt like we had to walk on egg shells to please our Dad,but I also know they did the best they know how,what hurts me the most is seeing these things my own children now,pray for us that we can break those issues down that’s my hearts desire..Thanks again your family is beautiful.

    1. Hi Anna, I am praying for you today. God truly can redeem time and heal hearts. Im sorry to hear of your childhood but I know that God is rebuilding you and your beautiful family. He is with you and will guide you every day! Thanks for sharing a piece of your story here, this is a safe place and as mommies we unite to pray for each other.

  4. Thank you so much Kara! This is definitely something I’m working on and I so appreciate your story and scriptures you’ve shared. I could spend weeks on this devotional topic!!

    1. Hi Kristall,

      Yes, there is so much more that could be said and learned on this topic. I’m trusting the Lord will continue the work that He has begun in His dear children (church) as we return to His way of blessing.

  5. Kara,

    I just LOVED this study!!!! I have seen first hand the power of speaking life over your children, with my daughter Georgia Sue. Deb taught me to speak life and it transformed her! And I have also seen the power of speaking death and the way children keep those words deep in their hearts in my own life. I still to this day fight believing them for truth. Yet, it is easy to becone lazy and fall back into not using my words for life. Thank you so much for this very important reminder! I will read your study again and again and keep this reminder at the front of my mind.
    Thank you for sharing part of your story. ?

    1. Hi Megan, thanks for sharing! I’m so happy to hear your story about Georgia Sue! Words truly do have the power to transform. Keep on keeping on you well reap a great reward!

  6. Thanks for sharing your heart Kara. What an important message! Our words can build up or break down and many times our words can hurt our loved ones worse than anything else we could ever do. I’m so grateful for the grace of God and the many times my children and husband were so sweet to forgive me. I’m thankful for the examples of others and learning to use my words to bring life. God is so good to teach us how to love well.

    1. Hi Deb, yes!! Gods grace is so good! I’d be lost without it! I’m so thankful for you and your family!

  7. Kara, thanks for being vulnerable, for sharing your heart and a portion of your incredible story. I’m so thankful you heard God’s voice that night. I have seen His redemption and restoration as you’ve beautifully applied and directed these life-changing principles of blessing toward your family. It’s been so wonderful to witness…God’s ways work every time!!

  8. I really love this study and the wise, wise instruction about blessing our children with our words. Such truth! Thank you!

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