A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. Proverbs 15:1
Read: Proverbs 15:1
Listen: Proverbs 15
The author seems to have a tense moment in mind when he writes this short proverb. A situation where tensions are boiling up, emotions are high, and both sides are ready to pounce. He suggests that a gentle answer will diffuse the situation in these types of moments. A gentle answer has the potential to turn away the building anger and wrath. However, a harsh answer has the opposite effect and makes the already tense situation even more so.
Although this concept makes sense, it can be challenging to accomplish. A gentle answer in tense moments is hard to muster and to deliver. However, grace seems to be a significant catalyst to make a difference. Grace allows us to give the other side the benefit of the doubt, to think the best of them and to respond with something gentle.
That sounds simple enough. But it takes work because most of us don’t bring grace naturally to a problematic situation. It takes practice to develop a heart of grace. We can start by actively listening, asking questions and thinking well of others. These are small ways to move towards a gracious direction. A gentle answer springs up out of a grace-filled heart.
IN YOUR CHAIR TIME TODAY
Do you struggle to bring grace into tense situations? Think of a step you can take or a habit you can start that will help you move your heart in a gracious direction. A couple of examples could be starting disagreements by asking a few questions so that you can genuinely learn and actively listening instead of formulating your responses.
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