Thursday, January 26, 2012

Power of Words

"You is kind.  You is smart.  And you is important."

If you are wondering why I am calling you kind and smart and important, don't worry; I am not. However, I am now wondering why you haven't seen the movie The Help yet, because that quote is from that movie. And yes, it is a very good movie.

A quick recap for those of you who haven't seen the film:  Back in the day in the 1960's, when the racial divide was at its height, typical southern prestigious women had African American maids, who they called the help. In the film, one of the characters named Aibileen, serves as the help for a typical American husband, wife, and child. The wife is everything but kind and appreciative towards Aibileen but Aibileen works to form a motherly bond with their child, showing her more love and affection that both her mother and father combined. Everyday and when in times of emotional stress: Abilileen repeats those words to the little girl. She looks her right in the eyes and says in a slow, serious yet kind and soft voice, "You is kind. You is smart. And You is important."

Watching the movie, I knew that was an important part of the film but I based it on the fact that it was just something that Aibileen did for the child to show her love and care for her. (Which, in and of itself is enough.) However, just recently I realized how important those words were for that little girl to hear.

While on a run the other day, I was listening to a sermon by my old youth pastor, Jerrod Rumley, and during his talk he mentioned how whenever Cooper, his eldest son of 5, gets into trouble, as parents they simple say "Rumley's are not that way. Rumley's are kind." or "Rumley's are patient." or "Rumley's are forgiving."

When I heard this, I was reminded of the words that Aibileen spoke to that little girl and I got to thinking. Now is that little girl really smart? and does she really understand the meaning of the word important or what it means to be kind? No. Probably not. And neither does Cooper really, BUT the thing that sticks out to me is the power of those words and the effect they will have on the rest of these children's lives.

Words are so powerful and I think most of us underestimate the power of them way to often. I don't mean hateful words. We all, especially us girls, know the power of a hateful word and what it can do to our soul.  I am referring to the power of positive and meaningful words that can form you into who you want to be and who are suppose to be.

Unfortunately, not all of us were raised with a maid as amazing as Aibileen nor with parents as wise as Jerrod and Jen Rumley. But what if we decided to take the power of words seriously? What if everyday, you and I woke up and said, or in my case, write down statements of truth about who we are and who we want to be.

So for example. A little application here:       I have not been known to be the kindest, most gentle girl out there.   This is something I have always wanted to work on and has been a big struggle of mine.

One of my statements would then be, like the little girl: I am kind. There is something about saying it or writing it down that makes you want to live it whether you fully believe it or not. I realized that while I was running and I literally said to myself "I am kind".

Discipline is another one of my struggles. So now, I can wake up and write down: I am kind. I am disciplined. And for a third: I am others-focused. (Lord knows I need to work on that one. I should maybe repeat that one three times alone.)

I strongly believe there is power in saying those things and they will make a difference over time in your life and how you act on a daily basis.

Also, you don't need to just keep the power of words for yourself. NEVER underestimate the power you have to make somebody be a better person through the use of words. Friends that you know struggle in a certain area, say to them the opposite of what they probably think or believe about themselves. To some of my friends I would say: You are worthy of love. You are strong.  You are important. You are capable. You are focused. You are a great dad. You are a great mom.  I don't know...just find that something and you say it to them. I have realized that I have had the privilege of being surround by amazing people in my life and I am just now realizing how their words have formed me into who I am. It took some digging but I realized that who I am, has everything to do with the important people who poured into me. It took one old friend from high school who I was really never that close too, writing a message to me on Facebook, telling me she loved my blog, to keep blogging.  One person. She has helped me believe that I am a good writer.

I want to encourage you to try it. If you have limiting beliefs about yourself, you will always be limited to keep being just the way you are. Erase those beliefs and start believing in the power of words and use them for good. Let them run through you and let them change you.

I take back what I said at the beginning of the post. this is me, now saying to you:

You IS kind.

You IS smart.

And you IS important.

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