Simplicity Made Simple | Simplicity and Words

Written By Dawn Heckert

Read: Matthew 5:33-37.
What is Jesus teaching here about simplicity of words?

Focus: This fall, we are focusing on the discipline of simplicity. Each week we will dig deeper into this discipline. Take the next 5 minutes to learn about this discipline in practice from Dawn Heckert.

Simplicity: Do I Need To Say This?

It is ironic or maybe extremely intentional that I am writing a blog titled: Do I Need To Say This? My husband often says, “You use too many words, what’s your point?” Growing up as one of twelve kids, words were how I got the attention of our parents. A good story would allow me to hold them captive as an audience for a few minutes longer. In school and now at work, I am the verbal processor of ideas. You share one idea and I’ll shower you with a hundred more ideas complete with bonus details. But the older I get, I am discovering the wisdom of less is more even in the simplicity of my words

A few years ago while reading the gospels, I noticed how few words Jesus used in conversations, comforting a person, or in telling about the kingdom of heaven. His presence and posture of listening to what was being said spoke more than the words He chose to use in response to any conversation. And my prayer because of Christ’s example became…

Holy Spirit, guide my speech. Allow me the peace of knowing your gentleness will flow through me as I connect with others. Help me to rely on you to present a posture of presence and a thoughtful response. Give me words filled with grace in all my conversations.

Honestly, it’s been hard for me, a person who has a passion for using words, to discover the beauty of being mindful in deep conversations to listen to another’s words. I still tend to charge ahead using my plethora of words to comfort, correct or rebuke, and end up wishing I could take back something I said.

Now, when I am invited into a conversation with a friend, parent, student, or colleague seeking support, I pray, “God give me thoughtful and intentional words to speak, and let me leave space for the Holy Spirit to do a deeper work in the soul that only it can do.”

Prayer: Think of a time when you did not use your words well. What would you do differently now? Ask God to help you practice simplicity with your words in the upcoming week. Write down anything that comes to mind.



Week 5 of 9 Simplicity

1 Comment

  1. Eben Fowler

    Well spoken Dawn.


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