A Harsh Word
Scripture Reading: Proverbs 15:1
A gentle answer turns away wrath,
but a harsh word stirs up anger.
In our western state’s forest, during the dry season, it only takes one small spark to ignite a forest fire that will eliminate thousands of trees. So, it is in a marriage relationship when the couple has not nourished their relationship with kind communication and consistent attention. It usually only takes “one harsh word” to ignite a fight that lasts for hours and sometimes days. What can be done to prevent such damage to our homes? Let’s look at a few suggestions.
First, slow our response communication down. The harsh word usually comes into play when one spouse says or does something that is misunderstood by their mate. If the mate doesn’t work hard to slow their response and ask some questions… seeking understanding – then a harsh word (or two) will come flying out of their mouth.
Secondly, since we are all human, we probably won’t eliminate all harsh words…more needs to be done. All couples need to put into place some “nurturing moments” on a consistent basis – so their relationship can withstand the hit of a harsh word or two. Consistent date nights each week, along with special attention to birthdays and anniversaries, are two examples of nurturing moments. Good marriages, as well as bad ones, cannot avoid all the negative moments that come when two people live together for a few years. We can prepare for those negative times by “banking” positive memories of nurturing moments.
Father, give me strength to deal with frustrating events with a gentle spirit and a controlled tongue! In Jesus’ Name, amen.