A Word Fitly Spoken

ACFWAdvice, Authors and writing, Critiques, Encouragement, writing 4 Comments

By E.V. Sparrow @evSparrow

A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver. ~ Proverbs 25:11 (ESV)

Through networking, I’ve witnessed some disturbing interactions among authors. Sometimes, these caused extreme discouragement for someone. I’m certain none of us wish to injure another’s soul and calling.

Perhaps as authors or editors we’d say there are “wrong” words. Words fitly spoken won’t create a detrimental impact on someone’s spiritual and emotional well-being.

Proverbs 16:23 (ESV):  The heart of the wise makes his speech judicious and adds persuasiveness to his lips.

God speaks and it’s done. He created us to speak. His words empowered the laws of our atmosphere to send out a unique sound others can hear. God also created our intellects to learn by hearing, and humans learned to communicate with each other through writing as well.

Words have power, whether in writing or critiquing. @evSparrow #writingcommunity #ACFW Click To Tweet

As a speaker or writer, what is our responsibility?

Job 26:4 (ESV):  With whose help have you uttered words, and whose breath has come out from you?

Psalm 49:3 (ESV): My mouth shall speak wisdom; the meditation of my heart shall be understanding.

1 Corinthians 2:4 (ESV): and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power.

What about our responsibility as listeners, or as the hearer of words? We receive and give many critiques of our works. Beta-readers give us feedback, and we do so for others. Editors send us edits to apply. Reviewers write their opinions, and we give our reviews to other authors. We courageously request recommendations from other authors, but do they always give them to us?

Job 12:11 (ESV): Does not the ear test words as the palate tastes food?

Proverbs 1:5 (ESV): Let the wise hear and increase in learning, and the one who understands obtain guidance…

Proverbs 12:14 (ESV): From the fruit of his mouth, a man is satisfied with good, and the work of a man’s hand comes back to him.

What is our responsibility with our reactions to harsh words that wound our hearts? It may be a time of correction or refinement for us. Words delivered harshly manner may yet be worth examining for truth. I’d say it’s a tremendous challenge for any of us to deliver words of truth with grace. How do we handle slights or insults? What about rejection?


E.V. Sparrow signed a three-book, historical fiction contract with Celebrate Lit Publishing. She has fourteen anthologized stories and placed second in the Inspire Writers Flash Fiction contest.

Sparrow has ministered on prayer, worship, and mission teams, traveled in nineteen countries, lived on an Israeli kibbutz, and hopped a freight train. Visit E.V. on her website and Twitter @evSparrow.

Comments 4

  1. Lovely reminder. I love the biblical verses you cite.

    I once had a supervisor in my social work/therapy training who said, “Words are like fine surgery.” Although she did not bring warmth to the table, I never forgot those words.

  2. Thank you for your wonderful post, E.V. I once heard a speaker say, “Treat everyone as though he has a broken heart, because very likely he does.” Words play a big part in healing broken hearts. As the Scriptures remind us in Proverbs 16: 24, “Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, Sweetness to the soul and health to the bones.”

    Blessings to you for writing this inspiring post!

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