When have you been hurt by someone’s words?
When have you spoken harmful words?
When have you been silent when you should have spoken or spoken when you should have been silent?
We often use the biblical verse “speaking the truth with love” to justify something we feel needs to be said to someone. Perhaps it does need to be said, but let’s commit to the biblical context instead of using the words to rationalize our preferences. Consider three important words included: speak, truth, love.
- When we speak the truth with love, we have to actually say the words. We can’t simply wish someone would read our minds. We can’t hint around. We can’t make assumptions that someone knows or will be told by someone else.
- Truth is defined by God. We don’t get to decide what the truth is. What we share as truth is often a preference or judgment coming from ourselves instead of from God. Be certain what you’re speaking as truth reflects God’s truth.
- Our love is defined by God’s love. We’re created in His image, and He pours everything we need into us, including love. We can justify not saying something because of love or saying something harsh because of love, but only God gets to decide the right response in love.
Speak, truth, love: three threads that are intricately woven together to create a strong cord.