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Proverbs 25:11 -A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.

James 3:9-11 - With it (the tongue) we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of God; from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way. Does a fountain send out from the same opening both fresh and bitter water?

Proverbs 18:21 - Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.

Ephesians 4:29 -Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.

     A shot bar down is a shot that hits the cross bar and deflects into the net. It's the darts equivalent of a bulls eye - a perfect shot. For a shooter it's the shot we dream of making. The beautiful sound of the 'ding' followed by the red light and the siren. It's a rewarding shot to make - sure it only counts one on the scoreboard, but it's the shot you remember for a long time. Many times our words aren't the exact thing others need to hear - sometimes we don't even try to have the right words - but sometimes whether the Lord gives us something to say or through other insight we have something to share that is the perfect word. In a past Penalty Kill some commented that they liked the use of the NHV (New Hockey Version)... well, here's another proverb from the New Hockey Version… Proverbs 25:11 - like a shot that is bar down so is a word fitly spoken.

     The words we speak have incredible impact and influence. Proverbs 18:21 tells us death and life are in the power of the tongue. Perhaps that sounds dramatic, but my guess is we can all think of a time when we've been very hurt by someone's words, but also a time when we've been immensely blessed by someone's words. There are opportunities everyday to use our tongues to build up and edify, and opportunities to tear people down. Many let their tongue be 'a restless evil' - and some of us just let opportunity pass on a regular basis. But just as a sniper in hockey hones in his or her shot to get that perfect shot more often, so we should work on how we impact others with our words. We should strive to 'let no corrupting talk come out of our mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear' (Ephesians 4:29).

     Jesus taught us that 'out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks' (Matthew 12:34). Our words can be revealing about what is inside our hearts. If we desire to be a people whose words are like a shot bar down we have to invest, prepare. If we want to speak life, we have to fill ourselves with life. John 4:13-14 - Jesus answered and said to her, "Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again; but whoever drinks of the water that I will gig him shall never theist; but the water that I will give will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life." Jesus was teaching that He is the wellspring of life. If we want life to overflow in us, in our hearts and off our tongues, we need to seek Jesus.

When is the last time you had words for someone that were 'bar down'?
Do you more often build others up with your words or tear them down?
How intentional are you with wielding the tongue which has the power of life and death?

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Absolutely powerful commentary on the "power of the tongue". Great word.

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