What Do You Mean?

Even when we’re being open and honest our message can be misconstrued. 

1 Chronicles 19:1-19

Reference: the Ammonite commanders said to Hanun, “Do you think David is honoring your father by sending envoys to you to express sympathy? Haven’t his envoys come to you only to explore and spy out the country and overthrow it?” (1 Chronicles 19:3 NIV)

Explore: Anyone who has tried to use sarcasm before, through text or on social media, will realise that it’s not always received in the same way it was intended. It is very difficult to communicate tone when typing words, and so, the meaning can easily be lost.

There are numerous times when this has happened between my husband and I. Just the other day I was preparing tea and messaged Cam asking when he’d be home. He messaged back jokingly saying, “I’m here.”

I went outside, but couldn’t see his car. Coming back inside I messaged back asking him to clarify and he explained he was just joking and was still at work. Let’s just say that there was no room for misinterpretation of how unimpressed I was when I responded!

Application: In 1 Chronicles 19 David is very thoughtful towards another nation. They took it the wrong way and ended up waging war against him.

It’s a good reminder in how clear we must be when communicating to others. Even when we’re being open and honest our message can be misconstrued.

My husband’s communication did not bring about a war but, if not dealt with straight away, miscommunication can bring confusion and the breakdown of a relationship. It is our responsibility to be clear in what we are saying but also, if we don’t understand someone, be confident enough to ask for clarification.

Prayer: Lord, for some reason there are times when it seems easier to live with the confusion than to be proactive in sorting out the miscommunication. Help our ‘yes’ to be ‘yes’ and our ‘no’ to be ‘no’, so that all are clear about our message. Amen.

If you could send the world one clear message, what would it be?

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This article was written by Linda Bailey

Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.

1 comment:

tinaAugust 28, 2013 at 7:35 PMReply

what a lovely article. it just speaks to me. I am an introvert type of person who would wish not to speak anymore even when things aren’t clear because I thought it might just turn into arguments or it will just be ignored should i talk further. The prayer made me realise that God do listen even when others don’t & gives me hope to be proactive than do nothing at all.
God bless you!