Speech, the way we engage others with our voice matters. Whether it is the danger that comes with endless chatter or an uninhibited tongue, or the beauty that forms when we say the right thing at the right time, what we say and how we say it are of concern.
Speech can often be an asset to an honorable person in times of need, whereas a corrupt person’s words could eventually become troublesome. In a previous article I wrote about the contrast of listening and speaking. This article takes a deeper dive into the importance of speech, particularly how our words create the ability to lead other people to greater knowledge.
Soft Vs Hard
While you can undoubtedly see where I am heading with this one is bears witness to start with the obvious … yet its still a challenge so perhaps it is not as obvious as we think. I am talking about how we speak to others. Soft words will keep emotions at bay where hard (or harsh) words can stir up anger and create resentment (among other things).
When we communicate with a soft tone, we find that we often have more common ground with another person than we originally think. Entering a heated debate off the back (especially on social media) postures a person as someone who cannot dialogue. Soft does not mean weak. Soft spoken people tend to know when and where to posture with strong boldness.
Tongue And Mouth
The tongue can be referred to as a mighty sword or a gentle tiger. It true that some of what rolls off our tongues should have stayed inside and locked away. Here is a picture for you. A dog. A dog’s mouth can be a disgusting display of foul stench and loud, obnoxious barking, and at the same time, a dog’s tongue has healing properties better than most over the counter medicines.
Better stated is that a sensible, intelligent person will use knowledge to speak with clearer boldness and common courtesy. However, a less ‘educated’ person will use words to pour out foolishness and fodder that is not digestible. Beyond that, is the concept of building up verses breaking down. There is a proverb that sates:
“A wholesome tongue is a tree of life, but perverseness in it breaks the spirit”
It is better to be a tongue rather than a mouth. The tongue is hard to control however it will not show disdain the way the mouth will.
Lips and Heart
Similarly, our lips will convey more knowledge than a heart filled with irrationality. We talk more from the heart than we do the mind. This is not true in all cases; however, words say more about the heart than the mind. If you have heard the phrase “lip service” this is what it is talking about. Lip service is just talking from the mind, but not necessarily from what is in the heart. Now, it is better to receive lip service from someone than from a heart that is filled with irrationality, scarcity, or one that lacks knowledge. Here is where seeing is believing…
Everywhere we go, the one thing that is constantly present is our eyes. Our eyes see everything. They see the good and the bad, the healthy and the sick, the better and the worse. Using our eyes to see what is in front of us and armed with knowledge, we can see into people, through people, and sometimes for people.
What a joy it is to be able to see. Sight gives us an appreciation for another person, place, or thing. Therefore, we long for interpersonal communication. Certainly, it is wonderful to engage on social media or even over a voice call. How much more engaged are we when we are looking directly at another? Zoom™ calls, Facetime™, Skype™ (is that even still around…lol), Go To Webinar™ all capitalize on two concepts. The first is the ability to get everyone on the ‘same room’ regardless of physical whereabouts. The second, and the most important is that we know the value of seeing another person. Text messages is a great example of sarcasm or sincerity gone wrong.
Take some time this week and take a mental inventory of how you speak, the tone used, the position of your heart, and how you see others. I guarantee that when you do you your character depth will increase.