We all have friends, co-workers, neighbors that grate on us. Those who appear to be seeking a ready and devoted audience, who’s only aim is to convince others of their beliefs and opinions… at all costs.
Then we have those friends who vacillate between varying ideologies, whatever one is the most popular at the time, so as not to create strife or offend. Or perhaps they say nothing at all, so fearful of other’s opinions they become emotionally paralyzed.
Is there a balance? Today Tamera Kraft, author of A Christmas Promise, attempts to speak to this question, but before you read her thoughts, I encourage you to read the passage I alluded to in my title, 1 Corinthians 13. You can do so here.
I also encourage you to visit Tamera’s blog to read a piece I wrote suggesting five ways writers can strengthen their writing. Yep, she and I did a blog swap! How fun is that? On another fun note, I received my author copies in the mail yesterday. You know what that means, right? This is really happening. 🙂 It also means reviews should be coming out any day now. Eek. That makes me nervous. Add to that the fact that I have an interview on KCRO Wednesday, (You can read about that here.) and that I’ll be speaking down at the Streets in a week from Saturday… (You can read about that here.) Um… I think I’m being stretched, but in a good way.
But enough blabbering.
Speak the Truth in Love
By Tamera Lynn Kraft
Because of our politically correct society, as Christians, we sometimes feel we have to walk a tightrope when it comes to speaking the truth in love. If we adhere to Biblical truth, we’re considered hate mongers and bullies. But if we water down the Gospel of Jesus Christ, are we really showing love?
For instance, if I don’t want to offend somebody who believes all ways lead to God and don’t tell him the truth, that Jesus Christ is the only way to Heaven, how much love am I showing? The truth will set him free. Telling him what he wants to hear will send him to Hell.
Nobody enjoys being cornered by a legalistic, uncaring Christian who only wants to prove others wrong. But we have an obligation to show the love of Christ and build a rapport with those who don’t know or who don’t care about the truth.
The old adage is true: People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.
If we really care about someone, we will tell her the truth of God’s Word. We will tell him sin leads to death, and that God has provided a way to life through Jesus Christ. Jesus, God’s only Son, is not one way of many to reconcile with God, He’s the only way to God.
We need to speak the truth in love, but we need to speak it. Our politically correct society sends the wrong message to this generation, a message that will condemn them to darkness. But we have the truth. Woe to us if we keep silent.
Psalm 86:11 Teach me your way, O LORD, that I may walk in Your truth; unite my heart to fear Your name.
John 8:31-32… So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you abide in My word, you are truly My disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.
1 John 3:18 Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.
Tamera Lynn Kraft has always loved adventures and writes Christian historical fiction set in America because there are so many adventures in American history. She has two novellas published: A Christmas Promise through Harbourlight and Soldier’s Heart through Helping Hands Press. She is married to the love of her life, has two grown children, and lives in Akron, Ohio.
Tamera is also the leader of a ministry called Revival Fire For Kids where she mentors other children’s leaders, teaches workshops, and is a children’s ministry consultant and children’s evangelist. She has curriculum published and is a recipient of the 2007 National Children’s Leaders Association Shepherd’s Cup for lifetime achievement in children’s ministry.
You can contact Tamera online at these sites.
Word Sharpeners Blog: http://tameralynnkraft.com
A Moravian Holiday Story, Circa 1773
During colonial times, John and Anna settle in an Ohio village to become Moravian missionaries to the Lenape. When John is called away to help at another settlement two days before Christmas, he promises he’ll be back by Christmas Day.
When he doesn’t show up, Anna works hard to not fear the worst while she provides her children with a traditional Moravian Christmas.
Through it all, she discovers a Christmas promise that will give her the peace she craves.
Available at these online stores:
Let’s talk about this. I suspect each of us tend to err on one side of this issue. I think I jump back and forth between one of two extremes–keeping my mouth shut when I should speak, or blurting out massive amounts of forceful, potentially hurtful, words when I should be quiet and prayerful. It’s a hard balance to find.
How do you believe we find the perfect balance between speaking the truth and loving our listener? When we find we’ve erred on one side or the other, what can do? Share your thoughts in the comments before or at Living by Grace on Facebook.
Thanks for having me, Jennifer. I enjoyed it.