On the extraordinary power of words

I am endlessly fascinated by the power of words to move us. They inspire, encourage and provoke us to shape who we think we are and why we are here.

Yet I am also aware of their power to distort, manipulate, and paint pictures of a world we do not recognise or trust.

So, for me, words need to be handled with reverence and treated with respect.

In particular, they need to be honest words that recognise that those who hear and see our words are living human beings. They are us.

This is a high calling. And those of us who seek to be carriers of words – in whatever form and context – have a responsibility to their integrity.

And this must grow and mature. It doesn’t happen overnight. We work towards this alignment, learning to sense the guardrails.

We also have to use these words in action: speaking and doing. Because saying or writing something is not enough, we must follow through.

So, this week, my writing about taking the leap has required me to move. To step up and step out. Not comfortable, but necessary. Otherwise, my words are shallow shells, and my offering to you cannot be trusted.

And I do want to be a carrier of good words that bear good fruit.

FOR MATINS

May I live this day

Compassionate in heart,
Clear in word,
Gracious in awareness,
Courageous in thought,
Generous in love.

+ John O’Donohue, excerpt from ‘For Matins’, from ‘Benedictus: A Book of Blessings’, Bantam Press, 2007

The image is of a silk scarf embossed with these words, given to me as a leaving gift a few years ago.

Pause. See differently. Re-Story 🌿

This week

I wanted to start this year well and discovered the poem Take the leap anyway from Gideon Heugh’s new book of poetry, Naming God, as the perfect anchor.

A few good words

If you have words you want people to hear, consider joining the next cohort of The Podcasting Workshop that starts on 15th January. I am joining as a student as I want to launch Be More Poet, and there are still a few places left. Hope to see you there. 🌿