“Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time.  Let your speech be always with Grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer every man.”

Colossians 4:5-6

When we’re grafted into the sweet Rose of Sharon, His Fragrance should permeate everything we say and do.

No one needs to tell you when you’re near fragrant flowers.  Their unique aroma has a way of filling our senses and making us want to draw near to them. . .drink in their beautiful colors with our eyes. . .caress their velvety petals in our hands. . .and breathe in deeply their one-of-a-kind fragrance.

Today’s Manna calls us to “walk in wisdom toward them that are without.”  We know, without looking elsewhere, that this refers to those who are still in spiritual darkness, living in B.C. (“Before Christ”—Eph. 2:1-3).  And, it takes Heavenly wisdom (James 4:13, 17-18) to know how to relate to them, ever-remembering that they are still spiritually dead, blind, deaf and dumb.

That’s why we are to “redeem (Grk. ‘exagorazo’—‘to buy up, ransom, rescue from loss, etc.’) the time”—for we never know if we’re have another opportunity to do so.  Truly, our lives are as “a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away” (James 4:13-15).  And, like a jet plane flying high overhead, leaving a vapor-trail behind, so are our lives.  If we’ll invest them in God’s Kingdom by investing them in others’ lives, we need not fear if anything will remain when we’re gone (I Cor. 15:58; Rev. 14:13).

An important part of this is “letting our speech (Grk. ‘logos’—‘something said, reasoning, computation, accounting, reckoning, manner of speaking, etc.’) be always with Grace.”  Since Grace is “God’s Love which cannot be earned,” we, therefore, should be very careful that our tongues do not run loose on both ends (as they’re so prone to do).  Instead, they should be “seasoned with salt,” which means “spicing up our conversation” just enough with Christ to add both flavor and thirst.

Or, another way to say it is “Speaking the truth in Love” (Eph. 4:15a), which means sometimes speaking up. . .and sometimes being quiet (Prov. 26:4-5; 25:11; Eccl. 3:7b).  But, it always means ensuring our words will not cause others to be driven further away from Christ instead of being drawn to Him.

Truly, “knowing how we ought to answer every man” requires God’s wisdom.  Everyone is different.  Every situation is different.  The key is knowing when to speak and when to be quiet.  Even Paul was constrained from entering the amphitheater in Ephesus to defend the Gospel before those almost-25,000 worshipers of Diana (Acts 19:23-31).

May the Holy Spirit help us be the right type of “salty-tongued” servants today, dear Pilgrim, who are “swift to hear, slow to speak and slow to wrath” (James 1:19); otherwise, our speaking may do more damage than good in God’s Kingdom work.  Grace.  Grace.  God’s Grace.  Help our lips, O Lord, to exalt You and edify others today.

By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated December 21, 2009

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