Words are a universal language with a multifaceted purpose. For example, words can be used to oppress, to free, to create, to educate, to destroy, to confuse, to deceive, to encourage and to inspire, etc.
Vernon E. Jordan, Jr.’s book, titled “Make it Plain”,explores the power of words but particularly draws from the rich oratorical history of African Americans. This book narrates how African Americans have influenced American society, in key historical periods through profound oratorical skill such as storytelling and speeches, in service to social justice. I think for me this book advocates that words are the silent ambassadors of social transformation.
I touch on the subject of words because a lot of my purpose advocacy has always been tied to how I choose to express words. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones once posed, “Have you realized that most of your unhappiness in life is due to the fact that you are listening to yourself instead of talking to yourself?”, Ladies and gentlemen, I think herein lies one of the greatest obstacles of purpose. I have always believed that an important step towards living a meaningful life, starts in a person’s own mouth.
When we were younger we often used to talk to ourselves and I think it’s time we brought this act back. I remember when I would get caught talking to myself and I would always get scolded. In the cultural context I come from, often when a person talks to themselves, this is frowned upon, to a point that we refer to that person as “mentally unstable”. But I would like to argue that there is great power in re-learning to talk to ourselves. Yes sure to the on-lookers it will always be a bizarre expression of humanity but I think, to do anything great in life, you need a bit of insanity.
My favourite part of what words can do, is their power to create.
So, this month’s purpose thought is, purpose needs a spokesperson and you need to be that person for your purpose. Things happen when you call upon them.
Pen The Vision | Bongeka Mhlongo | 2020July