As a man and his family went on vacation, their neighbor promised to keep an eye on their cat while they were gone. Three days into their vacation, the neighbor called the man and said: “your cat is dead.” The news jolted the man but he was also very angry at his neighbor’s bluntness and lack of common sense. When he asked for all the details, the neighbor gave all the steps that led to the cat’s demise. After lecturing his neighbor on the proper way of breaking bad news to people. He said: “Look, this is how you should have broken the news to me: Your cat was up on the roof last night and some dogs noticed and started barking at her. She got spooked so she jumped off the roof but landed right where the dogs were. They got a hold of her, chewed her up, and killed the poor thing.” The neighbor thanked him for the good advice and hung up. Two nights later he called his vacationing neighbor again. This time he started the conversation by saying: “Ken, your mother-in-law was up on the roof last night………” you get the picture. Right?
To the bad-news-calling neighbor’s defense, with some people you have to tell them everything clearly or else they won’t get it. You may remember the time when Jesus told His disciples about the death of their friend, Lazarus. They didn’t get it at first because he told them he was “sleeping.” They knew that Lazarus had been ill so when they heard he was sleeping, they said: “Lord, if he sleeps he will get better.” That’s when Jesus had to tell them plainly “Lazarus is dead.” You can read the whole story in the 11th Chapter of John.
As far as God’s children are concerned, we should always be clear in our messages and conversations, especially when we're sharing the gospel. When we speak to others, we should not beat around the bush. Some of you that know today’s Mexican culture, have probably heard the words “chifletas” or “indirectas.” In the English language they are called “innuendos.” If not our common sense, God’s grace can help us get our point across to others when we have to tell them something or get something off our chest. Paul, In his letter to the Ephesians, wrote that, as God’s children, we should be mature and that by “speaking the truth in love” we will grow up to be more like Christ. (See Eph. 4:11-15) Next time you have to tell somebody something important, make it as clear as possible. And if you pray about it beforehand and “speak the truth in love”, everything will work out fine.
God’s word for today: (Galatians 6:1) “Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted.”