First Baptist Church of Herndon

681 Elden St., Herndon, VA 20170-4722, Phone 703-437-3620

What, When, How

Linda Soller | Jul 08, 2019

At work we have been focused on respect among co-workers. Specifically, how to keep ourselves in check so that our communication does not inadvertently make a difficult situation worse. It happens so easily. I’ve learned that the impact of what you say is dramatically affected by when you say it and how you say it.


We all can remember hearing an adult raise their voice to a child, it might have been us – just saying. Chances are good the child did something that made the adult’s feelings of frustration, or fear, or embarrassment run high. Before they knew it, they were yelling or maybe saying things out loud in front of others that would have been more impactful had they been said in a different tone or in private.  It happens all the time. 


As adults we are under the daily stresses of traffic, schedules, finances, and health. When we feel strongly we can find ourselves expressing our feelings/opinions in that “I am right about this and everyone else is wrong” kind of way. We laugh in my family that my dad used to say things with such an air of authority that we figured he was always right, but he wasn’t. The “how” he spoke gave weight to “what” he said.


As Christians we need to be particularly mindful of the what, when, and how of our communications. God has great expectations for us, and sometimes even when dealing with each other our emotions run high. We are entitled to whatwe believe but need to remember they are our opinions and may not be shared with others who we care for and care about. And that is okay. We must consider whenwe speak so we don’t embarrass someone or insight harsh feelings among bystanders. It’s fine to speak up, it’s important to speak up, but howyou express yourself will make a difference.


Words are powerful tools. If you feel the need to scream at someone or stand indignant that the world looks at things with a different perspective, just remember God told us (what) to love and forgive one another, over and over again (when), and to be kind (how). Need to scream? Try screaming I love you, or I’m sorry. Now that will be impactful.


Have a great week! :o) Linda


P.S. It is never too late to say I’m sorry, do you need to say it to someone you know?