Speak Life

“Do you have a tattoo? What is it and why did you get it? If not, would you ever get one? What would the tattoo be, and what would it symbolize to you?”

I have two tattoos: a cross on my left wrist and “speak life” on my right inner forearm.

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this photo was taken before “speak life”. the cross is also not turned like the image depicts, but my wrist is turned. 

I got the cross during/after my senior year in high school (I don’t remember). I got it as a symbol that I belong to Christ. A visual representation of who I live for–God. I also use it as a daily reminder to do things as Jesus would’ve done them (WWJD!). A reminder that I have given my life to Him and that I have to keep trying my best to live by God’s word.

I also like when others notice it and compliment it. It’s the perfect opportunity to share my faith–which can be hard to bring up in the daily conversational topics. My favorite is when someone says something along the lines of “Do you have a strong faith? I noticed your tattoo”. Before this tattoo, I would’ve responded with how I go to church and believe in God, but that’s it. With these two intersecting lines, I now can confidently say, “Yeah, my faith is the most important thing to me”. I am able to say this because of who God is, not because of who I am. He has chosen me, He seeks me, and I seek Him.

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this photo was taken on Sunday, 09/23/18 at Pleasant Valley Church in Winona, MN.

As for “speak life”, I just got this one last Friday! My brother, Robbie, has the same saying just above his elbow (image below)–that’s what originally inspired me. Around the time he got his tattoo, I became more knowledgeable on the Bible, specifically Proverbs. Proverbs has a way of making the reader (or at least me) reevaluate the way words are said! I became so obsessed with how I was speaking and whether or not my speech was aligning with the Bible, that I bought a book called “Keep It Shut” and wrote two articles for Her Campus relating to speaking. One article was about gossiping, inspired by the book, and the other was how words physically affect ones body. 

I’ve become hooked on speaking life and positivity, resulting in my articles and my new tat. This is something I still struggle with today–gossip and negative or unnecessary talk. My tattoo makes me think of my brother, reminds me of Proverbs, and helps me hold my tongue. It helps me speak life into others.

And while writing this, I was struck with the thought that God breathed life into existence. Similar to speaking life, He pushed out a breath and there was earth. I pray the Holy Spirit can do the same with my breath– form uplifting and life-giving words that someone needs to hear.

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Robbie’s tattoo in spiraly cursive.

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