Words of Affirmation: 5 Love Languages

5 love languages

Words, Words, Words. It is amazing to me the something that takes so little effort can have a huge effect on everyone. The Bible speaks over and over about the power to bless with our words but

Proverbs 18:21 cuts to the chase with “The tongue has the power of Life and Death.”

I don’t know the source by I remember hearing that humans are the only species that can leave their dead walking having killed them with a word. Ouch!

For some of us whom Words of Affirmation is the primary love language, it is even stronger!

4 ways to figure out if some receives in Words of Affirmation

1) The person who lavishes compliments

2) The person who asks you what you think about something they did (sometimes inadvertently)

3) The person who holds on to negative words from others

4) The person who wonders what people meant by that


Types of Words of Affirmation

-Gratitude Hebrews 10:24 Says “Lets s consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.”

-Encouraging Words: We are commanded in 1 Thessalonians 5:11 to “Encourage one another and build each other up”

Gary Chapman gives multiple examples of this in the video and the book but starts with the weight loss one. And he is not alone, I have heard that example (going both ways) numerous times. (Really? Can we just for a minute pretend that we have issues, goals and aspirations in our marriages? ) But seriously, the standard encouraging word is dealing with slaying a challenge.

But not all words of Encouragement are tied to a specific venture or challenge. We are told to “Encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today.” Hebrews 3:13a

I love in the movie The Help the maid said to the kid she cared for every night “You is kind. You is smart. You is important.”

-Kind Words: Dr. Chapman refers to using Kinds Words in the face of conflict. Using Ephesians 4:32 “Be Kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as Christ forgave you” and Proverbs 15:1 “A soft answer turns away anger”

-Humble Words: Proverbs 16:24 “Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones”

How you express any of these words should be humbly! It really boils down to what my mom always said (and probably all of yours said it too), “It isn’t what you say but how you say it”. And that goes for your non-verbal communication too. We all know it but it is just a reminder.

So for those of you whom “Words of Affirmation” are your first language. Help people out! The responsibility can’t always be in someone else’s court.

But for the rest of you…

Chapman recommends you make a list of nice things to say and then say them. I am going to go a step further and recommend that you memorize them. It is always awkward to have someone converse by reading a script;).

He also recommends keeping a list of affirming things you hear or see and use them later. “Danger Will Robinson” Use them with caution…. That can come off so fake in some situations and a big hit in others. If you are using Shakespeare or Mr. Darcy, you may have a win. It will be obvious they are not your words but it will seem like you put effort into searching them out. If you are using some text book affirmation in the office you are going to come off sounding like Michael Scott from The Office. Just make sure it seems genuine and heart felt no matter who you are talking to!

A great way to avoid any awkwardness you are feeling is texts, email, facebook, and notes.! The written word is a great way to communicate. And part of what has been most dear in notes is when someone references a scripture they are praying for or an attribute they feel I am fulfilling.

As many of you know, I live “virtual” life with friends I have never met or only see a couple times a year. Emails, tweets and Facebook posting are our relationships;). When I get a post from a friend that just says thinking about you… My squeezes a little, possibly like the Grinch’s when it was growing, but it makes me smile and feel valued. The kind of valued that makes me want to do stuff for them;).

It really is, to use one of the most over used words of the decade so far, all about being intentional. If keeping a list of coworkers and marking when you make a point of saying something nice, do it. If it is making a point to write your children notes about the things you admire about them and then passing them out over time… what ever works!

In all things (and words) love!

{Over the next 7 weeks I am going to be doing a series on The 5 Love Languages (by Gary Chapman) in my Sunday School class. I decided to share my talks over here. As you may see, it isn’t aimed only at couples or children but all;). Be nice, I am nervous as it is;). }

One thought on “Words of Affirmation: 5 Love Languages”

  1. Powerful reminder of how words spoken without thought can easily wound others. The spoken word is a powerful tool with the ability the lift up or tear down in an instant. Great post!

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