Friday, April 11, 2014

discretion.

I remember when I was maybe 12 and my friend and I were swimming at a public pool. At some point we noticed that another girl our age was wearing a white swimsuit that was a little 'see through'. We decided that she needed to be aware of the situation. Now there are so many things that go into this. While you would want to know of 'said problem', hearing it at a public pool, from two girls your age when you are already wet, surrounded by your friends (who haven't said anything) ... Let's just say she wasn't thrilled or thankful to hear what we had to tell her.
Looking back on that event I see that while our intentions may have been good, our timing and delivery were not so good.

There are often situations in life that I need to decide if, how, and when to address the said 'issue' with others. That's when discretion comes into play.

Discretion:
1. the quality of behaving or speaking in such a way as to avoid causing offense or revealing private information
2. the freedom to decide what should be done in a particular situation.

The Bible also has insight in this:

When words are many sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise. Proverbs 10:19
Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat it's fruits.'Proverbs 18:21

This is not always easy. Add emotions. Enough said. But we are not called to just react with our emotions,

I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.  -Ephesians 4:1-3


So as life comes at me I pray that I will use discretion and wisdom to handle each situation in a way that honors God.

In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us.  -Titus 2:7-8


This doesn't mean that I shouldn't ever address conflict or challenge others to do or not do something. But it says to be smart about it. Think it through. Don't react with pure emotion. Take a 'time out' to seek God's wisdom. Stand back and get the whole picture. Do it with love and grace.

Let your conversation be filled with grace, seasoned with salt, so you may know how to answer everyone.   -Colossians 4:6

Whether it's a swimsuit 'malfunction' with a stranger, a disagreement in social media, or a conversation with a friend, I can only pray that I'll continue to seek God's face and treat others in a way that honors His name. It's not always easy or the most favored road, but this discretion road is one I'm learning to walk better every day.



1 comment:

  1. Melissa, once again you share something that I sorely needed to hear. Beautiful thoughts and scripture! Thank you!!

    ReplyDelete