August Newsletter

A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.   Proverbs 15:1

I have been trying out a couple of different Bible studies as possibilities for future studies.  One is a study that follows the lectionary—the assigned set of four Bible readings (one from the Old Testament, one from the Psalms, one from the Gospels, and one from the New Testament).  The other is a study called FaithLink, which seeks to connect faith and scripture to current events. 

We used a lesson from FaithLink called “Freedom, Disagreement and the Christian Faith.”  It focused on how our Christian faith might guide us through our differences, ranging from religious to political differences. 

In a time when our political rhetoric is ugly and divisive, we as Christians can choose how we react to these differences.  We can choose to heighten the ugliness, or we can react with listening ears and hearts. 

The United Methodist Church gives us guidance on how we can approach issues.  It cautions us that “How we disagree, more so than which position prevails, has a powerful impact on many audiences: young people and children, local congregations, community and national leaders, and those targeted by our disagreements.  As caring Christians, we carry responsibility for this impact whether or not we are aware of it.”  (Book of Resolutions, 2012).

The next time I am confronted with a difficult conversation, I hope I can remember that how I listen and how I talk can have much more of an impact than what I say.  It also helps when I remember words from the biblical book of Proverbs: “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” (Proverbs 15:1)

Blessings on your speaking and on your listening.

Rev. Linda Willey