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13 December 2022 ‘The lips of the godly speak helpful words.’ Proverbs 10:32 NLT

It’s a horrible feeling when people try to put us down, so, bearing that in mind, let’s refuse to do it to others. ‘Kind words bring life, but cruel words crush your spirit’ (Proverbs 15:4 GNT). We can crush someone with our words, so we need to be careful of how we use them. ‘Righteous people know the kind thing to say, but the wicked are always saying things that hurt’ (Proverbs 10:32 GNT). Don’t be the kind of person who pounces on a weakness in someone. It might be something we do in a joking way, but that can be just as harmful if the object of our words doesn’t also see it as a joke. ‘When you talk, do not say harmful things, but say what people need – words that will help others become stronger. Then what you say will do good to those who listen to you’ (Ephesians 4:29 NCV). How supportive are you? Try this thought exercise: imagine that God gave you a pound for each kind word you said in the past week, and took away a pound for each unkind word you said. Would you be wealthy or poor? In debt, or making a profit? When the brothers who betrayed Joseph knelt before him in Pharaoh’s palace, he held the power of life and death over them. But he forgave them, was gracious towards them, and promised to take care of them. Supportive words can build a bridge in a strained relationship, and some of the people we meet each day need an emotional lift. So today, look for opportunities to encourage and build people up.


Steps to forgiveness (1) Friday 24 March
Today, give your problem to God Thursday 23 March
When Jesus steps in Wednesday 22 March
Be faithful in the little things Tuesday 21 March
Real, able, and willing Monday 20 March
Influencers and teachers Sunday 19 March
Not ‘hopefully’ but ‘surely’ Saturday 18 March

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