“Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the bones” (Proverbs 16:24). When my daughters were growing up I decided early on that we were not allowed to have “put downs” in our house – not even in jest. This extended to verbal and written communication and it even extended to greeting cards. You know which ones I mean. Yes they are funny, but the humor comes at the other person’s expense. I wanted this rule because I could think back to times I didn’t follow it and I deeply hurt another person or someone hurt me.
In every communication we have with another person we really have two choices: we can say something to build the person up or tear them down. Even when we have to say something hard there is usually a right way to say it that doesn’t cause damage. Bad mouthing people and throwing cheap verbal assaults is an easy habit to get into, especially if in your mind you are “only kidding.” But you can correct that.
It is a very powerful thing to be able to add sweetness to someone’s soul and health to their bones. Put down the “put downs” and go in search of a honeycomb.