This week I’ve been doing a little blog series on what it means to be a “Proverbs woman” in our generation.
Growing up, making girl friends was tough. Let’s be honest-it still is. We are insecure, and we let our insecurities manifest in all sorts of ways. One of those “not so healthy” ways of dealing with our insecurities is to break other girls down. When we make someone else feel small, it makes us feel big. We live in a generation where gossip, rumors, and tabloids are considered normal. Even worse-gossiping & cutting other women down has turned into a “bonding experience” at most girls nights. Hollywood makes gossip & drama seem normal, glamorous, fabulous, and fun. Reality shows are so far from reality. They show these women saying nasty things to each other, talking behind each others’ backs, and spreading rumors…yet they fail to expose the pain, hurt, and consequences. Let’s try to break this unhealthy cycle.
Sometimes life can feel like a world of “mean girls.” Jr. High was a very difficult, transitional, awkward time for me. I’ll never forget this day in 6th grade. My tiny, 12 year old self spent loads of time getting ready for school…wanting to look perfect…wanting to look beautiful…wanting to be accepted. Instead, I was wearing boot cut jeans, stark white tennis shoes, clip-on earrings dangling from my un-pierced ears, a fluffy purple turtle neck, and had my hair pulled back into a very high ponytail with a huge scrunchy. I was already uncomfortable with my little body. I didn’t need anyone’s help to remind me of my flaws. One of the older girls spread a rumor that day that I stuffed my bra. The next day, she spread another rumor that I didn’t wear a bra. (How you can stuff a bra if you don’t wear one is beyond me). Even though her rumors were false, stupid, and childish, I found myself in the bathroom at school sobbing…all because of someone’s words.
I’m sure you’ve heard one of your parents say, “If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” We all know this…but we don’t live this. I know what shouldn’t be said. I am completely aware of what should not come out of my mouth. And yet, in my ugly moments of anger, frustration, or insecurity-I babble, ramble, and let out some completely unnecessary, idiotic statements. I have said things I’m ashamed of. I have told people things that I wish I could take back. And, I have been told things that hurt me so badly I’ll never forget them.
All of this gets me thinking…
Are we too quick to speak?
Proverbs 31 says:
“When she speaks, she has something worthwhile to say, and she always says it kindly.”
I don’t know about you, but I have struggled with this my entire life. I say a lot of worthless, pointless, meaningless things. And worst of all-I don’t always say them kindly. Girls “bond” over gossip. We crave drama & intrigue. But come on, girls: get your drama from a romantic comedy, not from hurting someone. As young women, we are sisters in Christ. How would you want your sister to be treated? We are here to love, encourage, and build each other up. We are not here to break each other down.
I challenge you, and myself, today to truly think about what we are saying before we say it. Let’s make our words worthwhile. Let’s be women of worth…women who have important things to say.
If you speak from a kind heart, your message will be accepted.
If you speak from a cold, hardened heart, your message will be ignored.
I’ve learned that it doesn’t matter how important or true my message is if I don’t present it with grace, poise, and kindness.
You are worthwhile. Let your words reflect that.
*Remember: your words can make or break someone’s day. The choice is yours.*