Our Words Have Power
I'm not exactly sure who came up with the saying, "sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me." That person was just plain wrong! Words can and do hurt. And social media has become a new platform where words are thrown about carelessly, with little regard for the damage they may do.
Any person in the public eye accepts that they are going to get their share of criticism. But now, with social media, the onslaught of negativity can be non-stop.
Everyone, it seems, has something to say. And because those words are being addressed through a computer rather than face to face, many don't stop to think, or simply don't care, how those words might make the person reading them feel.
There are certain topics or people I would have thought might be exempt from such harsh criticism. Like, say, a pregnant woman? I mean, she's a walking example of God's amazing power, right? She's carrying the miracle of life in her belly. It seems pregnancy should be cherished and celebrated, right?
Apparently not to the cyber-bullies out there. Because the nasty comments rolled in as the belly of Katie Fehlinger, a CBS news anchor in Philadelphia, expanded over the months of her pregnancy.
But that's ok. Because this beautiful mama had thick skin to go with that precious baby bump that was busy growing her twin girls. And her Facebook response to comments such as the one calling her a "sausage in a casing" had me cheering!
Read on to see just what Katie had to say to all those haters out there...
"A message for the haters…
Hey guys! Once more, I have to get something off my chest. So, the nature of my job makes me an easy target for criticism. I will always understand that, and I will most typically just ignore it. However, after someone blatantly called me a “sausage in casing” and another declared that “sticking your pregnant abdomen out like that is disgusting”, I felt a need to draw a line and speak up.
Everyone’s right to their opinion is important, but so are manners. And while rude comments like these will never make me feel the need to change anything about myself, I find a bigger underlying issue here. These particular nasty-grams were directed at a pregnant woman.
So this little manifesto of sorts is dedicated to every mother out there – other pregnant moms-to-be, moms reading this while their toddlers play on the swing set, moms whose kids have long since gone off to college…
You are beautiful.
Even during the most uncomfortable – and let’s face it, less than glamorous – symptoms of pregnancy, what women go through to bring their precious children into the world is, simply put, AMAZING and you should be lauded.
Frankly, I don’t care how “terrible” or “inappropriate” anyone thinks I look. I will gladly gain 50 pounds & suffer sleepless, uncomfortable nights if it means upping my chances to deliver 2 healthy baby girls. Now it’s about more than aesthetics. I want these babies to have the best start possible. And that hopefully means my belly that “looks like it’s about to explode!” will continue to grow the next few weeks.
I say let’s raise a Shirley Temple to swollen feet, stretch marks, nausea, all the extra pounds and the dark circles! They’re badges of motherhood. And for those of you who think that’s “disgusting”, remember a woman went through the very same thing to bring YOU into the world.
In the meantime, let’s all remember the lesson Mom taught us – if you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all."
Well put by a woman who sure knows how to rock a baby bump! And in case you were curious, Katie has since given birth to happy and healthy twin girls!
But this goes far beyond personal opinions on whether a pregnant belly should be proudly bared or kept under wraps. The point is, our words have power, so choose them carefully.
God wants us to use our words to build each other up. In fact, Proverbs 18:21 tells us that, "death and life are in the power of the tongue." So, how are you using your words? Are you using them to speak life or death? Ask yourself that question, not only the next time you open your mouth, but also the next time you get ready to post something online.
"For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.” Matthew 12:37
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h/t: Little Things