21 Days to More Godly Communication

The Lord talks about communication HUNDREDs of times in His Word. As we read the Word of God, we understand the power and impact of the tongue. He cautions us and instructs us in its use, not just for making speeches, but for everyday life.

They say it takes 21 days to make a habit so, over the next 21 days, I am going to share a few of my favorite verses and the importance of applying them today.

“A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.” -Proverbs 25:11

This is my signature verse so I thought I’d start with it. I love this verse. It reminds me that our words are precious. We shouldn’t just throw them out there and hope they stick. We should take care to choose our words wisely and craft our conversation with wisdom, tailoring it to the unique individual and particular situation at hand.
Being an effective communicator is more important today than it ever was before. WHY?

* We are now communicating with the world.
Technology has given us the ability to communicate with people around the world. With one click of a mouse we can send our words anywhere. We need to remember that these unseen people are human beings from different cultures, backgrounds and experiences who see the world in a unique way.

God doesn’t make Cookie-Cutter People and there is no one-size-fits-all approach to communicating effectively. It is critical that our words are a good “fit”.

* Misinformation abounds.
Precisely because it is so easy for someone to express their opinions to the world, it is equally as simple to express misinformation. We have come to understand that, just because it is written in the paper or reported by a newscaster, doesn’t necessarily make it true or accurate. The media is famous for twisting the truth and reporting whatever serves its agenda. We need, also, to understand that whatever is typed into a blog or article on the internet may not be “the whole truth and nothing but the truth.”

In today’s society, it is often necessary to explain or clear up misunderstandings people have. This isn’t as easy to do these days because there are more “hot topics” than there used to be. Politics and religion are no longer the only topics to “stay away from in polite company”. Today’s society has an emotional reaction to many topics including homeschooling, evolution, gun control, global warming, vaccinations, etc.

Today’s discussions require much more communication skill to overcome the knee-jerk emotional reactions that inevitably follow any mention of many of these topics.

* People are busy.
I remember watching a documentary from the 1950’s that depicted what society would look like in the 1980’s. I think I watched it in the 1990’s so it was quite humorous to me. It showed the wife as the lady of leisure. Due to the technological advances, she was able to get her housework done in a fraction of the time leaving her rested and able to pursue more of her interests.

Today’s woman is busy! Aside from the housework and children, she is usually working as well (outside or inside the home). Today’s husband may have to work more than one job to make ends meet. People no longer have the time to investigate issues thoroughly. They rely more and more on the media and, as I said, the media has their own agenda to promote. They no longer give you, as Sgt Friday used to say, “Just the facts, Ma’am.” The media infuses their “truth” with opinion, sound bites and misinformation.

It takes much more communication skill to respectfully break through some of these deeply held, accepted beliefs. It also takes more time. Time people generally don’t have to wade through all the information out there and discover the truth. They’re busy keeping their family together and making ends meet.

* Respectful discourse is no longer in fashion.
If you read the words of our forefathers, you will notice that, although they may have disagreed vehemently with someone, they usually did so with respect and in grace. Not so these days.

Because there is so much information (and misinformation) thrown at us when we are busier than ever, there is more of a frustration with life today. Because much of the information we get is from faceless sources (TV, internet, email, billbaords) we are no longer coming face-to-face with a human being. There is a justification, or even almost an entitlement, to respond to someone out of frustration with disrespect.

I remember waiting in line behind a red light in the left turn lane a few years ago. The woman behind me got out of her car, walked around to my driver’s side window and began screaming her head off at me! I remember her being behind me for several blocks prior to that. She came into view when the car in front of her changed lanes. I had no idea what she was so upset about and I dared not open my window to find out! When the light changed to green, she got back in her car and went on her way.

Road rage is only one of the many ways in which society has come to express their anger and frustration. It is much less common for someone to do something so violent in person, but over the internet where you don’t need to look into the eyes of your victim, people are much more likely to “fly off the handle”.

It takes much more communication skill to handle the typical “Nasty Grams” we get today.

* Anti-Christian bias is.
More and more each day, Christians are told to sit down and be quiet about Jesus. Just the mere mention of the name of our Lord and Savior brings anger to some. More and more college professors and even high school teachers feel justified in spouting hatred of Christians, our beliefs and our Lord. More and more God is being taken out of our society in the name of “separation of church and state.”

Even young Christian children may have to handle a question or negative comment (in school or even on the playground) about their faith. It is no longer a matter of if a Christian will be asked to defend his faith, but when.

God tells us to share the Good News. We can’t do that without communicating. When we communicate, whether it be to share or defend our faith, express our political ideas or even just to have a conversation with someone in line at the grocery store, we cannot just throw our words out there and hope for the best.

The Lord tells us how we are to use the power of the tongue. Throughout the Bible, He shares how we are to speak with one another. Each of us is a unique creation of God who sees the world from a different perspective. It takes much more skill to communicate than it used to. We need to learn to share our thoughts and ideas in today’s world. The first step is to understand that our words are precious.

A word fitly spoken can be a gift we give to others as we share our lives and experiences with them.

Last 5 Articles Added By JoJo Tabares

About JoJo Tabares

JoJo Tabares holds a degree in Speech Communication, but it is her humorous approach to communication skills which has made her a highly sought-after Christian speaker and writer. Her articles appear in homeschool publications, such as Homeschool Enrichment Magazine and The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, which also endorses her Say What You Mean curricula. You can also find JoJo on web sites such as Crosswalk.com and Dr.Laura.com. For more information on communication FUNdamentals and Christian-based communication studies for the whole family, please visit http://www.ArtofEloquence.com

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