Daily D – Colossians 4:6
Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone. COLOSSIANS 4:6 (NLT)
Be gracious in your speech.
The goal is to bring out the best in others in a conversation, not put them down, not cut them out.
Think back on the recent presidential debate. (I am sorry to make you relive that experience.) However, it illustrates this text with no embellishment at all. In the words of Forrest Gump, “That’s about all I have to say about that.”
A quick internet search will help you locate the 1984 presidential debates between Ronald Reagan and Walter Mondale. Feel free to watch those memories for the purposes of comparison and contrast.
Reagan was called The Great Communicator. At one point in one debate, he was so brilliant, so funny, even Mondale had to laugh and enjoy the moment. It is no wonder he won two landslide victories.
The positive alternative is a winning hand.
One of my favorite old sayings is, “When I’m abrasive, I’m never persuasive.” Another goes along with it. “Encouragement is oxygen to the soul.”
The “right response for everyone” is seldom, if ever, harsh, angry, curt, or vindictive. The right response makes people stand taller, understand easily, perform better, and feel valued.
The Message makes it clear: “The goal is to bring out the best in others in a conversation, not put them down, not cut them out.”
Here are three guidelines to work on today.
First, I will say nothing that does not bring out the best in others.
Second, I will only edify and encourage others with my words.
Third, I will speak in a manner that draws bigger circles of friendship, not smaller ones.
In this year when practically everything is going wrong, we can begin reversing the tide by the way we talk to ourselves, to those closest to us, to those we spend our days with, and to those we meet along the way.
Remember, the right response is always gracious and attractive. Take this life lesson from Paul the Apostle and not political candidates and news commentators.
The right words expressed with affection and gentleness make you more likable and lovable. They turn disagreements into searches for common ground. They replace grumpy frowns with grateful smiles.
I will thrive as I become ever more deeply rooted in Jesus.
Our Father, I want to grow strong in the truth I was taught. I want to live a live overflowing with thanksgiving. I want to thrive. Sink my roots deeply into Jesus. I want to live and to grow in a manner demonstrating the beautiful effects of your grace and mercy. Amen.
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Isaiah 30:18 Therefore the LORD is waiting to show you mercy, and is rising up to show you compassion, for the LORD is a just God. All who wait patiently for him are happy. (CSB)
Matthew 14:29 “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter answered him, “command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” And climbing out of the boat, Peter started walking on the water and came toward Jesus. (CSB)
Matthew 14:19, 20 Then he commanded the crowds to sit down on the grass. He took the five loaves and the two fish, looking up to heaven, he blessed them. He broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. Everyone ate and was satisfied. They picked up twelve baskets full of leftover pieces. (CSB)