SEASONED WITH GRACE
“Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person.” (Col. 4:6)
When I lived in Bakersfield, California, our home was 67 miles from a grove of Sequoia Redwood trees. I used to love to drive up into the mountains to stand in the shadow of these gigantic, strong trees. They grow to over 300 feet tall (a football field standing on end!!!) and live for hundreds of years. The Redwood has one unique feature which applies to the Christian walk. Their bark is soft and pliable, and can be pressed in several inches, but the inside of the tree is concrete solid, and virtually impervious to lightning, fire, disease and strong winds.
As we interact with people, and especially when we are tired or stressed, it is easy to become defensive, “short” in our verbal reactions, too sensitive in our response or hurtful to others. As we get to know our fellow team members better we can slip into unkind teasing, or even a verbally critical spirit. All of these things become hurtful and ultimately damaging to accomplishing our goal as worship leaders.
The story is told of a young lady who had said some very unkind things about a friend. She went to her pastor for advice, and he told her two things: That God and her friend could forgive her, and that she was to go to the top of the highest building in town, break a feather pillow and scatter the feathers over the street far below. Puzzled, she did as she was directed, and then went back to the pastor for further counsel. In the second session, he said “Now I want you to go back to the street beneath that building, and pick up every feather. “But”, she exclaimed, “that is impossible!! They have blown everywhere by now!!” He replied “In the same way, while you can be forgiven, your words can never be retrieved, and can have a damaging impact from this day forward.”
Let your speech be “with grace” today, “as though seasoned with salt”, so that your testimony and the testimony of your team will remain un-compromised. Keep your “bark” or the part of you that interacts with others, soft and pliable, while your inner focus and purpose remains as solid and unchanging as steel.
THOUGHT: “”Kind words can be short and easy to speak but their echoes are truly endless.” ( Mother Teresa )