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Wednesday, September 21, 2005

DAILY ENCOURAGEMENT WEDNESDAY - HOW TO SPEAK GRACIOUSLY. Part 2.

Speech is human, silence is divine, yet also brutish and dead: therefore we must learn both arts. - Thomas Carlyle.

Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison, that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak. Conduct yourselves wisely toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person. - Col 4:2-6.

Yesterday in Part 1, we shared how, in order to ‘Speak Graciously,’ we needed to have grace in our hearts. We also, every time we speak, to do so in the name of the Lord Jesus. Today, we share...

FOUR TESTS OF GRACIOUS SPEECH

Is Our Speech True?
The Apostle Paul told the Church at Colosse, that their gracious speech should be “... seasoned with salt,” he was doing so in the fact that, salt was used for preserving and purifying, and so our speech should truthful and pure. Eph 4:15 tells us to Speak the truth in love... Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ.

Before we repeat a statement, we have to make sure it is true! Someone said “I believe half of what I see, and nothing of what I hear!” Just because someone said it dose not make it true! It is so easy to jump to a wrong conclusion! It's like the dog story I heard...

There once was a dog named August,
Who was always jumping at conclusions,
One day he jumped at the conclusion of a mule,
That was the last day of August!

Before we believe something, and before we repeat something, make sure it is true!

Is Our Speech Complete?
It is so easy to get half of the story, what is said may be true, but it may not be the complete story! Before we say anything, make sure we get the entire story, keeping in mind that there is also two sides to a story. Let’s get our facts straight before we speak, and the then we will have, the complete story...
For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? - Luke 14:28.

John was driving home late one night when he picked up a hitchhiker. As they rode along, he began to be suspicious of his passenger. John checked to see if his wallet was safe in the pocket of his coat that was on the seat between them, but it wasn't there! So he slammed on the brakes, ordered the hitchhiker out, and said, "Hand over the wallet immediately!" The frightened hitchhiker handed over a billfold, and John drove off. When he arrived home, he started to tell his wife about the experience, but she interrupted him, saying, "Before I forget, John, do you know that you left your wallet at home this morning?" - Our Daily Bread.

Is Our Speech Necessary?
What we say may be true, it may be complete, but is it NECESSARY? Remember...
Eph 4:15, “Speaking the truth in LOVE.” Also, in... 1 Pet 4:8 Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins.

Some of the most hurtful words that have ever been spoken, have been preceded by the words... “it is the truth.” Just because it is the truth, doesn’t make it necessary! There are times when silence truly is golden! I love the old saying... ‘Think before you speak.’

Blessed are they who have nothing to say, and who cannot be persuaded to say it. - James Russell Lowell.

Is Our Speech Kind?
Let our speech be tempered with compassion and love... Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honor preferring one another; - Rom 12:10. (KJV)

And in... Eph 4:31-32 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

British statesman and financier Cecil Rhodes, whose fortune was used to endow the world-famous Rhodes Scholarships, was a stickler for correct dress--but apparently not at the expense of someone else's feelings. A young man invited to dine with Rhodes arrived by train and had to go directly to Rhodes's home in his travel-stained clothes. Once there he was appalled to find the other guests already assembled, wearing full evening dress. After what seemed a long time Rhodes appeared, in a shabby old blue suit. Later the young man learned that his host had been dressed in evening clothes, but put on the old suit when he heard of his young guest's dilemma. - Today in the Word.

Be kind and obliging to each other; study good Christians and their tenderness of behavior. A Christian cannot be a savage, and they need not be a fool. Never put any person to needless pain, show them kindness, compassion, and love in Jesus name.

Loving Father, help me by the power of the Holy Spirit, to speak graciously at all times. Let my words reflect the life, love, and grace of my Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, in whose name I pray, amen.

GBYAY

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