What salt does for food, you can do for others
From Colossians: A 28-Day Devotional
At first glance, this is a strange request: "Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person" (Colossians 4:6).
But consider what salt does. Salt brings the flavor out of food. That’s right, your grandmother’s insistence on salting the pasta water is actually backed by science.
A little salt reduces bitterness and increases sweet, sour, and umami, which is desirable for sweet recipes. More salt suppresses sweetness and enhances umami, which is good for savory dishes.
The same way we use salt to bring the best out of our food, we’re to use our words to bring the best out of those around us. "The goal is to bring out the best in others in a conversation, not put them down, not cut them out" (Colossians 4:6, MSG).
Our words have the power to build each other up by pointing out what’s good and where we see God at work. But if we’re not covering conversations in grace, the same tongue that blesses one person can devastate another.
Proverbs 18:21 reminds us that "Death and life are in the power of the tongue." Our words have too much power not to think before we speak. But if we’ll see every conversation as a God-ordained interaction, we’ll find that we listen more than we speak.
God is already having a conversation with your friends, your spouse, and your coworkers. He’s just asking you to pick up in person where He left off in the spiritual.
So instead of looking for an opening or waiting for your turn to speak, sense the divine opportunity before you and ask the Holy Spirit what He would have you say. You just might find that you know how you ought to answer each person.
- When is the last time you had an unhurried conversation with your roommate, spouse, or kids?
- How can you encourage someone close to you today? Where have you seen God at work in someone’s life? Take a few minutes to call it out and let them know.