All Yellers and Shouters, Raise Your Hand

Proverbs 15:1 says, “A soft answer turneth away wrath; but grievous words stir up anger.” I should be the last person to write about a soft answer. I’ve always had a big mouth, not just in words, but in volume.  Growing up, it was more common for me to hear “Heather, turn the volume down” than “Heather, eat your vegetables.” I guess that’s why I made a decent cheerleader, but a terrible bookkeeper. In the bible, God challenges us to use a softer voice, because He used one Himself. Especially in conversations with really messed up people. He was good like that. When you master the ability to speak the truth in love, there’s no need to shout, spray or slay.  To illustrate the appeal of a soft voice, let’s compare soft things with its counterparts: a Sealy Posturepedic bed with a fuzzy blanket or a hard cot with a cold sheet? Lavender Softsoap or a bar of Dial? Soft-upholstered LazyBoy recliner or a hard bench?  Soft things are appealing to us just like a soft voice is appealing to others. If you (like me) have the tendency to shout, yell, scream, roar, clamor or bark, we need to add a PAUSE button to our brains. Before we RESPOND in our usual loud way, press pause in our heads. In that pause, adjust pitch and volume. THEN press play and speak forth!

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