“Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.” (Colossians 4:6)
I like to think I am one of few words. And some days I am. But some days it’s just awful and whatever cones to mind, out it comes. I need a floodgate, a huge strong dam, to hold them back.
Jesus says: “Every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment” (Matthew 12:36). The word “answer”, its more than just an answer to a question. The word, in Greek, is used 250 times in the New Testament. In most instances it is used in a simple narrative sense (“he answered saying”). It refers to our everyday conversation. Is it full of grace and showing a gentle love, along with the great good news we are to share?
“Study to be quiet, and to do your own business” (1 Thessalonians 4:11).
I love quiet. It is a hard thing to come by though in our home. With two boys that are nothing BUT boy and one little girl who strives to keep up with her brothers ~ sigh ~ NO excuse.I am sure so long ago, when when these words were first penned, it was not so silent you could hear a pin drop. Perhaps that is not even the quiet He refers to. Its that inner quiet, a peace only He can put within us. A n ability for us to be quiet. Maybe the world around us is not, perhaps they are overwhelmingly loud; we are not to be We are not to let that be about us. We are called to be quiet. A different kind of quiet.
“Sound speech, that cannot be condemned” (Titus 2:8).
I recently sent, with my husband’s blessings, a letter to my mother in law. It was a letter I felt was inspired by His Spirit. It’s a bit long but if you care to read, please feel free to see what I pray, is a plea for love and grace, much needed. Unfortunately it was not received as we had prayed it would be. We need be mindful of the words we use, how much or little we may say. And how important it is to speak in love; gentle and truthful words, with love and a true and right spirit.
Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour” (Ephesians 4:25).
I like to think that I only speak truth. Yet I remember an old landlord of mine; a wise old veteran, who used to say that there were three sides to every story. My side, his side, and the truth. I fear there is much truth in that. We may not mean to stretch things, we may not mean to tell in a way that makes us the innocent, yet often we do. how are we known? Do we speak something which others know they can have faith in? Can they trust? No matter how small and insignificant it seems, let us speak truth to all we speak with. Always.
Furthermore, “let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers” (Ephesians 4:29).
I am sure no one would guess it, but once upon a time, I could make a sailor blush. I had quite the colorful vocabulary. What shame to my mother who raised me to be more than I made myself into.I love words. I love grammar. I love to read and to write; to put one or two words together, and see how they transform something. Its beautiful. But it is not always that way Words have so much power when we use them. How do we use them? I am guilty. I am guilty of not always minding what I say . Not always holding my tongue when that is the only thing that is best for the moment. Grace. Let our tongues, our words, be covered in grace.
“But who ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth” (Colossians 3:8).
I study and ponder the words i use so often. Certainly, more often than not I seek His words, and not my own When talking with someone in need; when praying for another; even as I write and post on social media – Jesus give me your words. Only words that are my Lord and Saviours can truly be that which edifies and builds up; which fills another full. Are my words wholesome, Are they thoughtful?
My boys are in Bible Quizzing, are taught to count bananas before they answer a question at practices and tournaments. Perhaps we all should consider a few bananas before we speak. That we may pray, seek His words, and answer in a way that shows the wisdom and love of the Lord. I wonder, if I count three or five bananas, rather than responding instantly, in speech – What different could that make? Not just in my family but in how others see Jesus in me? Isn’t that all that matters really? In this lost and fallen world? That those in need see Jesus in you and me?