The sounds in a home contribute significantly to its aura—the overall quality it emits. As I discussed two weeks ago, I’m seeking to create a home that has a God-honoring aura.
Voices are one of the predominant sounds in most homes. Thankfully, the Bible has a lot to say about communication. If we follow the principles set forth in Scripture, then the things we say—and how we say them—will help our homes have God-honoring auras.
Bible verses to guide communication in the home
- “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” (Proverbs 15:1)
- “A person finds joy in giving an apt reply—and how good is a timely word!” (Proverbs 15:23)
- “The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” (Proverbs 18:21)
- “Better to live on a corner of the roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife.” (Proverbs 21:9)
- “A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.” (Luke 6:45)
- “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” (Ephesians 4:29)
- “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.” (Philippians 2:3-4)
- “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds…” (Hebrews 10:24)
- “My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry…” (James 1:19)
- “With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring?” (James 3:9-11)
Other communication principles to keep in mind
In addition to the precepts contained in these verses, my husband and I have found some other principles that help promote peaceful, edifying communication in our home.
- Poor communication often results from lack of skill, not lack of desire to communicate. Communication skills can be learned; be patient and sharpen your skills together.
- Be quick to issue earnest apologies.
- “Good,” “well,” and “fine” can mean very different things to different members of the family, so be specific when describing how your day was, how dinner tastes, etc. We like using rating scales (e.g., a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being awful and 10 being amazing).
- Delaying important discussions until a better time is not the same as letting the sun go down on your anger. Certainly avoid going to bed angry, but don’t be afraid to put off important discussions until you’re rested and have had time to process your thoughts.
- Focus your communication on the future, not the past. The future can be changed.
Next week we’ll look at the sounds of our entertainment choices (e.g., music, movies).
In the meanwhile, share what Bible verses and communication principles you would add to these lists. What other things do you do to promote God-honoring communication in your home?