Monday, July 9, 2018

The Importance of Good Communication

Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such {a word} as is good for edification according to the need {of the moment,} so that it will give grace to those who hear.  Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.  Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you. Ephesians 4:29-32
A bit of humor may just say it all.
A judge was interviewing a woman regarding her pending divorce, and asked, "What are the grounds for your divorce?" She replied, "About four acres and a nice little home in the middle of the property with a stream running by."  "No," he said, "I mean what is the foundation of this case?" "It is made of concrete, brick and mortar," she responded. "I mean," he continued, "What are your relations like?" "I have an aunt and uncle living here in town, and so do my husband's parents." He said, "Do you have a real grudge?""No," she replied, "We have a two-car carport and have never really needed one." "Please," he tried again, "is there any infidelity in your marriage?" "Yes, both my son and daughter have stereo sets. We don't necessarily like the music, but the answer to your questions is yes." "Ma'am, does your husband ever beat you up?" "Yes," she responded, "about twice a week he gets up earlier than I do."Finally, in frustration, the judge asked, "Lady, why do you want a divorce?" "Oh, I don't want a divorce," she replied.  "I've never wanted a divorceMy husband does. He said he can't communicate with me?!?"
Sometimes it may seem that communication is impossible.  It may even seem at times that you are speaking a different language than the one you are trying to communicate with.  And, that may well be the case.  It is very true that people speak and listen from different bases.  Some listen from the base of emotion and color all of the words with feeling.  Others are merely interested in facts and are clueless as to emotions felt by the other party.
The truth is that real communication is not an easy thing to accomplish.  Real communication occurs when the other person hears the facts clearly and feels the emotion behind the words as well.  Such communication causes the speaker to believe that they have not only been heard, but understood.  Being understood is more than receiving facts but receiving feelings.
Ephesians 4 29-32 is a very important passage for all interested in creating healthy, positive and supportive communication in our lives.  The emphasis is as much on what should not be said as what should be shared.  The key words are, as is good for edification according to the need {of the moment,} so that it will give grace to those who hear.  Being the source of edification in anyone’s life is a special place.  This is especially important in family communication.
Failure to communicate stands as a major contributing factor to breakdowns in marriages, families, churches and society as a whole.  Real communication is not easy although it is simple.  The missing ingredient may well be effort.
May God help us to focus this week on being an effective communicator.  I can assure you this will have less to do with what we say than how we listen.

Scripture to Claim:
As for me, I shall call upon God, And the LORD will save me. Evening and morning and at noon, I will complain and murmur, And He will hear my voice. Psalms 55:16-17

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