As an unchurched Christian, I often get lectured by others about Paul’s admonishment to not forsake the gathering of the saints. Believe it or not, I like to argue this point, as it easily leads to a discussion of who chooses which passages we follow as commands. (I will write another blog entry on that soon). Regardless, Jesus did make clear his command that we should love one another.
Perhaps the most poignant way we do this is in how we speak to one another. Proverbs 15.1 reminds us, “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” How often have we spoken too quickly and caused unnecessary harm, strife and anger? We should fill our worlds with love, even when talking through the tougher aspects of the gospel such as sin, and hell. We all know the difference of someone who approaches us sincerely concerned for our souls, and those simply looking to push an agenda. May we always ensure that we allow our love to show in everything we say.
Along those lines, we need to keep in mind that what we say to others really matters. Both a powerful tool and a terrifying weapon, our tongue can build others up or tear them down rather quickly. As Spider Man often reminds us, “with great power comes great responsibility.” As you seek out other friends and siblings in faith this year, keep this in mind. What you say really does matter. Sometimes we forget, but the words we speak can actually speak death or life into the hearts of others. Seek to speak ‘life’ into the lives of others. Seek to encourage others, even while you share the gospel, or talk to your best friend.
Along those lines, I have included TobyMac’s song, Speak Life, below. Let it encourage you to reach out to others this year and speak life to them.