Are You Listening?
James 1.19-20 (NASB)
19 This you know, my beloved brethren, but everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.
Reminders From James
This [we] Know:
James' audience would have been aware of ancient wisdom regarding controlling one's speech.
Everyone Must Be:
No excuse of 'personality' or 'humor', this is something all of God's people must grow into.
Quick to Hear:
"All conversation today is just one person waiting for the other person to shut up so they can say what they want to say." ~Kim Heersche
Slow to Speak:
Greek "bradys" [bra-DOOS] - To deliberate, considering all facts before proceeding.
Slow to Anger:
Human anger will put unnecessary barriers between us when we need to correct each other.
look UP - Make time to listen to God by studying His word and sitting in silence to let Him speak.
lean IN - Start practicing a pause before speaking, whether in groups or in one-on-one conversation. Make sure you are listening to what others are saying - not merely waiting for your chance to say what you want.
reach OUT - Pay special attention to how your words (and how you say them) are perceived by those who do not know Christ. Are you showing Christ's love?