Speak Life Part 2


It is the spirit who gives life. The flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and are life. (WEB). – John 6:63

If you’ve read my author bio, chances are you’ve noticed the line: She often feels connected to those who have been hurt, broken, and betrayed by the world and seeks to use her writing to encourage readers to “speak life.”

While I visited this subject in my original blog post, Speak Life recently God showed me there’s someone I haven’t been speaking life to. Myself. And I suspect many of you may have the same problem. Through talking with Him and reflecting, I understand it’s not just the words we speak over others that matter. The words we speak over ourselves matter just as much.

I’ve realized recently my own problems stem from my childhood. Early on, I felt as if I didn’t fit in. I wanted friends, but I was shy in new social situations. This became worse as I experienced bullying and teasing. Along the way, I became extremely critical of myself. I thought if I pointed out my own flaws (whether real or not) first, then it wouldn’t hurt so much when others did. I also internalized a lot of what others had already said. And I started speaking them over myself. I was ugly and fat, according to other people, so they must be right. I would struggle with certain subjects in school and then I told myself I must be stupid, too. Making mistakes became I just can’t do anything right.

As a result, I became depressed in high school and as a young adult when I struggled with self-hatred. If I’m honest, I’m still not a big fan of myself. Jesus said to love others as you love yourself, but I find it significantly easier to love other people and to forgive their flaws. And that’s probably because of everything I have spoken over myself. At times like now where I’ve lost a lot of weight, it doesn’t register emotionally. While intellectually I know I’ve lost weight and I can see it in the mirror, I still don’t like what I see. And yet I know I don’t need to lose more weight. Another 5-10 lbs would be nice and I would love to tone up, but I’m within a healthy weight range now. Without the right mindset, it won’t change how I feel.

God is helping me work on my mindset in a variety of areas. One of the most powerful things He has told me was to speak to myself the way He speaks to me. That means being encouraging to myself when appropriate. It means speaking, correcting, but not condemning, words to myself. That also means correcting the lies the enemy has told me over the years. The ones I have internalized to where I now often speak them over myself.

God also told me that there’s enough people who have been and are going to be against me in life. They don’t need me joining them. He’s for me and I should be, too.

Though it may take a while to undo years’ worth of negative self-talk, I’m learning to speak life over myself. And I encourage you to do the same. The body of Christ can only do what it needs to if we are strong and living out God’s purpose in our lives. Don’t tear down what God wants to do through you with your own words, because someone else is counting on you.

(While revising this blog, I realized my dad used to speak negatively about himself too. Sometimes, perhaps in jest. It seems like there’s a learned behaviour and spiritual component here as well. The tendency to worry is also something that seems to be attached to my family line. I’ve decided that both things must end with me.)

Read the other blog posts in this series:

Speak Life

Speak the Truth in Love

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