2016-07-28 - Seasoned with Salt
Colossians 4:6 Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person.
Have you ever heard someone tell a joke so badly that it just wasn't funny any more? They stumble over the words, or get the events of the story out of order to the point where the people listening are confused. It may be worse than forgetting the punch line.
In Paul's letter to the church at Colossae in making a point about how to "Conduct yourselves" regarding how to speak with people who are not Christians he says that our words should be "seasoned with salt". Well, we understand that we should be salt (a preservative) and light to the world around us. (Matt 5:13-16) How does this apply to our speech?
The meaning may not be immediately obvious to we who live with refrigeration and other modern food handling. In addition to preserving food salt also made the food taste better, as it does today. Two millennia ago it was even more important.
How do you sell someone on an idea? Do you you simply lay out the points and hope they understand and like it? Or do you also explain the reasons for and benefits of the plan? There is an old saying - It is easier to catch flies with sugar than with vinegar.
Christians might use words like gospel, theophany, etc. that are not common to everyone. I find when trying to explain something technical I can lose a non-technical person in about a sentence and a half by burying them under "jargon". These are words that are second nature to me and others who work in the same field. But to people outside that field they are not very tasty. Field programmable gate array (FPGA) doesn't grip the attention of the average executive.
So season your words with salt. Make them palatable - more interesting. Don't water down the message, but make your answers to questions clear to your audience. Leave them wanting desert.
Colossians 4:6 (NIRV) Let the words you speak always be full of grace. Learn how to make your words what people want to hear. Then you will know how to answer everyone.
Holy Spirit, please prepare the hearts of those who You place in our paths to hear the good news. Lord Jesus, give us the words that You have for them. Let our words be seasoned with grace and touch their needs. Call them irresistibly to You. Amen.
Grace & Peace,
All verses are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) unless otherwise noted.