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Always Saying the Right Thing

Always Saying the Right Thing

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Category: Special Features

Have you ever meant to say something that didn't come out just the way you wanted it to? Being a preacher, it seems that I have a constant problem of "foot in mouth." I have heard other folks do the same thing, sometimes a complement that didn't come off just the way we wanted. Sometimes a word of correction that came off much harsher than we had intended.

I received this little story from a friend of mine in Missouri (Raymond), which illustrates the problem.

A bashful young man asked a friend for advice on what to talk about on a date. The friend said to flatter the girl, "Tell her when you see her face, time stands still." What the rattled young man said to his date was, "Your face would stop a clock."

How do you get into messes like that, and more importantly, how do you get out again? Most of the time, it is as simple as saying, "I'm sorry, that was not what I meant to say."

Notice what Paul writes those who followed Jesus in his day:

Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man (Colossians 4:6).
"Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt ..."* I don't know about you, but I need an almost constant reminding of that principle. Why? Because I often don't do so well at accomplishing it.

May our God guide you in all that you think and say!


* The phrase "seasoned with salt" does not mean "salty speech," which comes from the concept of "speaking salty like a sailor (who sails on salt water and the language used at sea is, well, salty)." Instead, the phrase refers to being correctly seasoned like using the correct amount of salt.

About the Author

Russ Lawson
Russ Lawson is a former missionary to Africa and minister in Ohio. He now works with World Christian Literature Outreach and writes a weekly email devotional, Messages from the Heart. For more information about Russ, click here.

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