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April 6

Colossians: Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer everyone.

I grew up in a somewhat sarcastic family. As I grew, I became sarcastic as well. When I married, there was much sarcasm. I used to think it was quick-witted and funny until it wasn't. One time, I inadvertently hurt someone's feelings with sarcasm. It was no longer funny, nor quick-witted.

Now I see it as a form of insecure, immature humor.

It took a long time for me to realize there is no room for sarcasm in a relationship, any relationship, especially in a marriage. These days, I see couples throw sarcasm around like they're playing catch in the backyard, back and forth, and it saddens me. How long will it go on before someone gets hurt by a jab?

"I was kidding," they may say, but isn't there some element of truth in the jab?

I recall one time, a family member made fun of my height. It hurt my feelings, mostly because there was absolutely nothing I could do about it. It was completely out of my control and it was hurtful.

It was likely that instant when I made the conscious effort to be more gracious in my speech, in the words I choose to put out to the world.

Today, may we commit to being more gracious in our speech, to lift another with our words instead of beating them down.

April 6

Matthew: saying to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down; for it is written, ‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ and ‘On their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.’”

Mark: And when the sun rose, it was scorched; and since it had no root, it withered away.

Luke: And the devil said to him, “To you I will give their glory and all this authority; for it has been given over to me, and I give it to anyone I please.

John: Jacob’s well was there, and Jesus, tired out by his journey, was sitting by the well. It was about noon.

Acts: with Annas the high priest, Caiaphas, John, and Alexander, and all who were of the high-priestly family.

Romans: So also David speaks of the blessedness of those to whom God reckons righteousness apart from works:

1 Corinthians: I have applied all this to Apollos and myself for your benefit, brothers and sisters, so that you may learn through us the meaning of the saying, “Nothing beyond what is written,” so that none of you will be puffed up in favor of one against another.

2 Corinthians: For it is the God who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

Galatians: And because you are children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!”

Ephesians: one God and Father of all, who is above all and through all and in all.

Philippians: Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Colossians: Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer everyone.

1 Thessalonians: that no one wrong or exploit a brother or sister in this matter, because the Lord is an avenger in all these things, just as we have already told you beforehand and solemnly warned you.

1 Timothy: If you put these instructions before the brothers and sisters, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, nourished on the words of the faith and of the sound teaching that you have followed.

2 Timothy: As for me, I am already being poured out as a libation, and the time of my departure has come.

Hebrews: Since therefore it remains open for some to enter it, and those who formerly received the good news failed to enter because of disobedience,

James: But he gives all the more grace; therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”

1 Peter: For this is the reason the gospel was proclaimed even to the dead, so that, though they had been judged in the flesh as everyone is judged, they might live in the spirit as God does.

1 John: We are from God. Whoever knows God listens to us, and whoever is not from God does not listen to us. From this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

Revelation: and in front of the throne there is something like a sea of glass, like crystal. Around the throne, and on each side of the throne, are four living creatures, full of eyes in front and behind:

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