Watch what you say … Reflections on the Sunday gospel, Mark 1:21-28

father steven labaireI am pleased to present this guest post from Father Steven LaBaire, pastor of Holy Family Parish in Worcester, MA.

In preparation for mass this Sunday:

This Sunday’s gospel has Jesus going into a synagogue. People are gathered there. He speaks. Many who hear him speak say that he “speaks with authority.”  His words are able to drive out “dark” oppressive forces that are wearing down the lives of people in the community.

What about us? What kinds of words do we use in the course of a day?

Have you ever thought or wondered what effect what we say
has on others and on ourselves?

Sometimes we all have to face challenges that require speaking hard truths that are difficult to speak and to hear.

Chris Piascik 20111109 Blah, Blah, Blah
Chris Piascik 20111109 Blah, Blah, Blah

But a constant “flow” of criticism, whining, put-downs, sarcasm,  complaining and “poor me self-victimization”? Who wants to be around that?  (I’ve been in those situations and with those personalities. I feel like I’ve been “dumped on” with negativity. Yuck!)

The word “authority” has its root in the Latin phrase, “to give life.”  So when Jesus spoke, people experienced the things he said as “life-giving.” His words actually helped people grow. The felt that they were healed and helped by his words.

Some people monitor their “calorie intake.”
Sometimes it’s good to monitor our “word output.”

Do the things we say, even in difficult situations, help people to grow, to  become better people? Or is too much of our “talk” punctuated by a negativity that tears people down, or simply does nothing to change the situation?

If we adopt a Christ-like “grammar” and speech patterns, we might erase some dark forces too. We might impart “ new life” to a situation, and, in the process, feel a heck of a lot better about ourselves (and life) at the end of the day…

Copyright 2015 Steven M. LaBaire

Art/Photography: Father Stephen LaBaire — Susan Bailey, copyright 2015
Blah Blah Blah, Name – Chris Piascik, Flickr Creative Commons;

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