Words are very powerful. They can influence people to pursue good things, give hope to the hopeless, and spark inspiration to a generation that has lost the power to dream big things. On the down side, however, they can also cause many to pursue what is wrong, break people's hopes, and cause people to lose their motivation to reach great heights.
If we aren't very careful, we could end up being swayed and influenced by the words of the people around us. Proverbs 18:21 tells us,
"Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit." (NKJV)
Listening to the wrong things will be very dangerous to us. Don't believe me? Here are some reasons why we should be careful to choose what we listen to.
1) It affects what we meditate on
Have you ever heard of what they call the "last song syndrome" or "L.S.S."? It happens this way: you hear a song, then the song keeps playing back in your head even hours or days after you hear the song. Usually, songs that are very simple yet catchy or have a memorable rhythm, beat and lyrics are the kinds of songs our brains retains.
In the same way, what we listen to or regularly hear tend to stick in our minds. Listening to the wrong words – whether sung or spoken – makes it harder for us to do what Philippians 4:8 tells us:
"Finally, brothers, whatever things are true, whatever things are honest, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue, and if there is any praise, think on these things."
2) It influences us
The Bible tells us that "out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks" (see Luke 6:45). Following the point above, what we listen to fills our hearts and minds, and then eventually influences our choices.
Think about it. When a Godly person keeps hearing nothing but ungodly and wicked things most (if not all) the time, sooner or later that person becomes influenced. His faith is possibly negatively affected in many different ways: convictions get challenged, ideas become contaminated, purity is compromised, and decisions are influenced.
3) What we listen to either helps us or destroys us
What we listen to either helps us grow in our faith or destroys even the little faith that we have for the Lord. Think about it.
If we soak ourselves in condemning words and keep listening to lies and divisive arguments, we will end up having a shipwrecked faith. We are told to reject people who are very divisive with their words (see Titus 3:9-11). On the other hand, we are encouraged to seek counsel from the Godly and God's Word because through it we will be blessed.(see Psalm 1:1-3).