The Thought Value of Words

Words express and convey thought. Said Henry Ward Beecher, "All words are pegs to hang ideas on." A person's character is indicated by his spoken or written words. Though his language may not always be grammatically correct, if it expresses consideration, courtesy, cleanness, humility, it betokens his worthiness. "A word fitly spoken," wrote Solomon, "is like apples of gold in pictures of silver." One marvels at how "fitly spoken" were the words of the Master. Terse, cogent, and meaningful, they illustrate the coincidence of his thought and speech. Art and beauty clothed his sayings.

A student of books needs to learn the value of words. He must recognize that each word has a thought value. That is why we use words—for their thought value. To read words superficially, without truly appreciating their thought value, is like talking much but saying little. Referring to the textbook of Christian Science, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," Mary Baker Eddy, its author, says to her followers (p. 559): "Read this book from beginning to end. Study it, ponder it."

Mrs. Eddy was unusually well equipped to convey to human thought in wisely chosen words the ideas of spiritual existence which flooded her consciousness with the discovery of Christian Science. Though possessing an exceptional vocabulary she turned for the choice of the right words to convey her message to the Mind that gave her the message. So alert was she to the value of words that she was ever waiting on Mind's direction in the final selection of a word to impart to others an inspired thought. Students of Christian Science soon become students of words, searchers for the ideas they betoken.

Enjoy 1 free Sentinel article or audio program each month, including content from 1898 to today.

July 29, 1944

We'd love to hear from you!

Easily submit your testimonies, articles, and poems online.