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Words Are Powerful

I didn’t ride my first roller coaster until my eighth grade trip to King’s Island.  I didn’t ride another one until some buddies and I took a trip to the ATL and Six Flags Over Georgia.  I’ll explain more as I go along.


My friend, Rob Shep, wrote this post yesterday about his son, Hayden’s, roller coaster experience.  Hayden loved a roller coaster ride until so many people would ask him if it was scary.  Eventually, he became scared to ride the roller coaster without holding Rob’s hand.  I can totally relate to Hayden’s fears.

From a young age, all I heard about roller coasters was negative.  My mom rode one during her senior trip to New York.  The experience turned out negative and that was passed on to me.

My dad constantly downed the roller coaster experience.  In fact, anything beyond the bumper cars was more than he wanted to take part of.

My grandparents took my uncle to Six Flags in the late 60’s.  Evidently they saw the roller coaster go out slowly and come back in slowly.  They decided to try it.  Somehow they didn’t know what happened in the middle.  The results were passed along to me.

I was scared to death of roller coasters and that one attempt to ride one following the eighth grade did nothing to help me out.  It wasn’t until that trip at nineteen that I finally gave roller coasters and honest try.  The Mind Bender, Great American Scream Machine and others turned me on to roller coasters.

Obviously, just like Hayden, the words, the lies, spoken to me throughout life hindered me when it came to experiencing what has become one of my joys in life.  I haven’t made it to Dollywood for a couple of years, so I’m looking forward to getting season passes next year so that I can take advantage of the coasters in my own back door.

It goes beyond roller coasters, though.  The same type thing happened with school.  I heard how hard school was and how much my parents hated school.  It wasn’t until I went to seminary that I actually truly enjoyed school.

The lesson I learn, the lesson we all need to learn, is that our words are powerful.  We have the capability to build up or tear down.  We prove every day what James wrote when he said that the tongue is a fire and cannot be controlled.

We must learn to choose our words carefully, whether we are speaking to a child or writing a blog.  Evidence of their value will be demonstrated in other’s lives.

Do you take serious the impact of your words on others?

  1. August 6, 2014 at 5:41 am

    As I got older I began to realize the impact my words had. I was young and brash and had no clue. Only after some nuclear damage did it dawn on me my life would be one war after another unless I controlled my tongue.

  2. August 6, 2014 at 6:18 am

    Amen! As my Grandfather always said “Speak your truth softly and with all the love you have in your heart. Your words will shape the future of someone’s life.”
    Larry, as you know, I was raised in a different world and it wasn’t until after I left the reservation that I realized just how protected I was. If you have read all three of my posts on my life lessons from Grandfather, you would see the wisdom of his words.
    Have a wonderful day!


  3. robshep
    August 6, 2014 at 9:34 am

    Thanks for the shout! Humans are created in the image of God. God brought life by His words. I think it’s why words are so powerful. Being created in God’s image we have the power to bring life or death with our words.

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