I started thinking about this resolution because, even though I want to follow biblical principles in my speech, knowing when to speak and what to say in order to edify others is challenging for me. Here are some of my speech goals for home, work and church.
"When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent." Proverbs 10:19What I want to say (and think) less
Lots of words that are blurted out and conversation that is not edifying, such as:
• That's above my pay grade.
• Do I have to do everything myself?
• I am too busy.
• You know I didn't mean it that way.
• It is what it is.
• She left me no choice.
• I know I said I would, but I got distracted.
• That's just the way I am. I can't help it.
• Not again!
• Try the decaf.
• Why do you have to be so_____? I don't know why you are ______?
"Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear." Ephesians 4:29What I want to say more
Talk that builds up, words that are fitting for the situation, gracious speech for the hearer, such as:
• What can I do to help you?
• Thank you for all your ministry to others.
• We had a wonderful time at your house.
• Will you forgive me? I shouldn't have done that.
• I am so sorry that you are suffering.
• Please meet me for ice cream. My treat.
• You don't owe me anything.
• I promise.
• Praise the Lord!
• When I saw this in the store, I thought of you. Here it is.
• It's no bother.
• You are such a ______. (kind friend, creative person, good conversationalist, prayer warrior)
• I heard a good report that your Christian example was encouraging to others.
• Don't fuss on my account. I can entertain myself.
I pray that I will not be silent when He wants me to speak a gracious word and that I will not utter sinful speech when He wants me to be silent. May God help us all as we talk to others in 2016.
For those who like the pithy phrase tradition, here are two I saw recently.
As seen in a bookstore: Don't judge a book by its movie.
As seen on a bumper sticker: Don't let this car fool you; I am laying up treasure in heavenYou might also like previous blog postings.
Pithy Phrases for 2013
Pithy Phrases for 2014
Pithy Quotes for 2015