"A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver." (Proverbs 25:11, KJV)
JACK EVENS tells the story of a shoe salesman making the mistake of telling a woman that one foot was bigger than the other. The woman was offended and stalked out of the store in anger to a shoe store across the street. This salesman remarked as he fit her with a pair of shoes, "I notice that one foot is smaller than the other." This brought a big smile to her face and she replied, "Yes, and I would like to have two pairs of these shoes."
We should never flatter people just to get them to do what we want them to do, but care must always be used in how we say things. The Bible teaches us, "Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how you ought to answer every man" (Colossians 4:6).
Once a word is said, it cannot be unsaid. Always be careful to think before you speak. What may seem funny to you may be very insulting to another person.
Paul taught us to speak words that edify and build up so that we may give grace to the hearer (Ephesians 4:29). It has been said that God gives us two ears and one tongue. Maybe it would help if we listened twice as much as we talked.
Father, may we learn to say things that edify others and bless You. In Jesus' name. Amen.
- CALVIN H. BOWERS, Los Angeles, California