Cultivate the Talent of Speech
Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man. Colossians 4:6.
It is the work of parents to train their children to proper habits of speech. The very best school for this culture is the homelife. From the earliest years the children should be taught to speak respectfully and lovingly to their parents and to one another. They should be taught that only words of gentleness, truth, and purity must pass their lips. Let the parents themselves be daily learners in the school of Christ. Then by precept and example they can teach their children the use of “sound speech, that cannot be condemned” (Titus 2:8). This is one of the greatest and most responsible of their duties.—Christ’s Object Lessons, 337, 338.
The power of speech is a talent that should be diligently cultivated. Of all the gifts we have received from God, none is capable of being a greater blessing than this. With the voice we convince and persuade, with it we offer prayer and praise to God, and with it we tell others of the Redeemer’s love. How important, then, that it be so trained as to be most effective for good....
By diligent effort all may acquire the power to read intelligibly, and to speak in a full, clear, round tone, in a distinct and impressive manner. By doing this we may greatly increase our efficiency as workers for Christ.
Every Christian is called to make known to others the unsearchable riches of Christ....
The right culture and use of the power of speech has to do with every line of Christian work; it enters into the homelife, and into all our intercourse with one another. We should accustom ourselves to speak in pleasant tones, to use pure and correct language, and words that are kind and courteous. Sweet, kind words are as dew and gentle showers to the soul. The Scripture says of Christ that grace was poured into His lips that He might “know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary” (Psalm 45:2; Isaiah 50:4). And the Lord bids us, “Let your speech be alway with grace” (Colossians 4:6), “that it may minister grace unto the hearers” (Ephesians 4:29).
In seeking to correct or reform others we should be careful of our words.... All who would advocate the principles of truth need to receive the heavenly oil of love. Under all circumstances reproof should be spoken in love. Then our words will reform but not exasperate. Christ by His Holy Spirit will supply the force and the power. This is His work.—The Acts of the Apostles, 335-337.
From Reflecting Christ - Page 283