Speak Wisely

‘Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt.’ Colossians 4:6 NKJV

The Chinese Christian leader Watchman Nee devoted a chapter in his book The Normal Christian Worker to watching what you say and how you say it. He reported that some believers were hindered in their influence. ‘Instead of being powerful instruments in the Lord’s service, their ministry makes little impact on account of the constant leakage of power through their careless talk.’

Paul writes, ‘Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt.’ That means when you speak, make sure it’s in good taste. And the look on your face and the tone of your voice can determine whether a person receives or resents what you’re saying. The Living Bible translates Paul’s words this way: ‘Let your conversation be gracious as well as sensible, for then you will have the right answer for everyone. Again Paul writes, ‘Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.’ (Ephesians 4:29 NLT)

So before you speak, check your attitude and ask yourself, ‘What frame of mind am I in right now?’ And don’t stop with that question. Ask yourself also, ‘Will what I’m about to say help or hurt, clarify or confuse, make me feel better or the other person feel better?’ Acknowledging his tendency to say the wrong thing, David prayed, ‘Take control of what I say, O Lord, and guard my lips. Don’t let me drift towards evil.’ (Psalm 141:3–4 NLT)

It’s not enough to be talented in life; to succeed, you must speak wisely.

SoulFood: 2 Pet 1–3, John 4:27–38, Ps 87, Pr 24:1–4

word4today an adaptation of The Word For Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright © 2022

Today’s Readings

2 Peter 1–2:9

1:1 Simeon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ,

To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ:

May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.

His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. 10 Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. 11 For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

12 Therefore I intend always to remind you of these qualities, though you know them and are established in the truth that you have. 13 I think it right, as long as I am in this body, to stir you up by way of reminder, 14 since I know that the putting off of my body will be soon, as our Lord Jesus Christ made clear to me. 15 And I will make every effort so that after my departure you may be able at any time to recall these things.

16 For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 For when he received honor and glory from God the Father, and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased,” 18 we ourselves heard this very voice borne from heaven, for we were with him on the holy mountain. 19 And we have the prophetic word more fully confirmed, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, 20 knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. 21 For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.

2:1 But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.

For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment; if he did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a herald of righteousness, with seven others, when he brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly; if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; and if he rescued righteous Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked (for as that righteous man lived among them day after day, he was tormenting his righteous soul over their lawless deeds that he saw and heard); then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment,

John 4:27–38

27 Just then his disciples came back. They marveled that he was talking with a woman, but no one said, “What do you seek?” or, “Why are you talking with her?” 28 So the woman left her water jar and went away into town and said to the people, 29 “Come, see a man who told me all that I ever did. Can this be the Christ?” 30 They went out of the town and were coming to him.

31 Meanwhile the disciples were urging him, saying, “Rabbi, eat.” 32 But he said to them, “I have food to eat that you do not know about.” 33 So the disciples said to one another, “Has anyone brought him something to eat?” 34 Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work. 35 Do you not say, ‘There are yet four months, then comes the harvest’? Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest. 36 Already the one who reaps is receiving wages and gathering fruit for eternal life, so that sower and reaper may rejoice together. 37 For here the saying holds true, ‘One sows and another reaps.’ 38 I sent you to reap that for which you did not labor. Others have labored, and you have entered into their labor.”

Psalm 87

A Psalm of the Sons of Korah. A Song.

87:1   On the holy mount stands the city he founded;
    the LORD loves the gates of Zion
    more than all the dwelling places of Jacob.
  Glorious things of you are spoken,
    O city of God. Selah
  Among those who know me I mention Rahab and Babylon;
    behold, Philistia and Tyre, with Cush—
    “This one was born there,” they say.
  And of Zion it shall be said,
    “This one and that one were born in her”;
    for the Most High himself will establish her.
  The LORD records as he registers the peoples,
    “This one was born there.” Selah
  Singers and dancers alike say,
    “All my springs are in you.”

Proverbs 24:1–4

24:1   Be not envious of evil men,
    nor desire to be with them,
  for their hearts devise violence,
    and their lips talk of trouble.
  By wisdom a house is built,
    and by understanding it is established;
  by knowledge the rooms are filled
    with all precious and pleasant riches.

Mon 18 October, 2021


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