Like many of you, I grew up in a very hostile home. There were many shouting matches, many fist fists, we even had a fork stabbing and a knockout by frying pan. I can’t speak for the other 7, but for me, I didn’t know any different – this was normal, life is tough, and you better be tougher and meaner than the next guy. It wasn’t until Jesus saved me did I learn the silliness of this mind set; as the Word of God says, “there is a way that seems right to man, but it’s end is death.” I learned that everything I “held dear” ran opposite to God’s Word. I held pride, violence, and fearlessness in high regard. Then I learned that hostility and violence does not make me a man, and it certainly does not make me a faithful follower of Christ. My new goal, by God’s Grace, was to learn His Word and be faithful to it; which is extremely difficult since one of the “goals” of a Christian was something that I considered unmanly and wimpy. God’s Word instructs me to live at peace with all, so far as it depends on me. Romans 12:18 If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. “How in the world am I supposed to do that!!” Sure, it’s easy if everything goes the way I want and everyone agrees with me – but if not, somebody needs to get a slap down right? Wrong. God’s Word always tells you how to do what He commands: Proverbs 16:7 When a man's ways please the LORD, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him. So, “peace with all” starts with YOUR ways, not theirs. “My way” was definitely not God’s ways, so my way needed to change – I needed to commit my ways to God’s ways, I needed to change my mind about what is Truth, and my ways need to follow suit since the only way my way can please the Lord are if they are His ways. Today I am going to look at one of those ways – speech. Our speech, texts, emails, and posts are to be soft, gentle, and humble. Proverbs 15:1 A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. I must confess; I have had to delete a couple recent posts. When I made them, I was convinced it was right, by the Spirit did not give me rest. The posts were not soft, gentle, or humble. If our speech continually stirs up anger, we may need to take inventory on our communication. Proverbs 16:23 The heart of the wise teaches his mouth, and adds learning to his lips. One clear learning the wise should have and is to be sought above gold is humility. Proverbs 16:5 Everyone who is arrogant in heart is an abomination to the LORD; be assured, he will not go unpunished. Proverbs 16:18-21 Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall. It is better to be of a lowly spirit with the poor than to divide the spoil with the proud. Whoever gives thought to the word will discover good, and blessed is he who trusts in the LORD. The wise of heart is called discerning, and sweetness of speech increases persuasiveness. Proverbs 16:24 Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body. Proverbs 16:27-28 A worthless man plots evil, and his speech is like a scorching fire. A dishonest man spreads strife, and a whisperer separates close friends.