One of the excuses I hear for why people choose not to study communication skills is that the Lord will give us the words we need when we need them. In other words, God will speak through all of us and, presumably, in every situation. There is some scriptural precedent for this. Here are a few instances where the Lord tells us that some people were given the words needed in a particular situation. “But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak.” Matthew 10:19 “Then the Lord put forth his hand, and touched my mouth. And the Lord said unto me, Behold, I have put my words in thy mouth.” Jeremiah 1:9 However, if we take a closer look, we will find a few problems with thinking that we don’t need knowledge in order to speak eloquently, persuasively and effectively. 1. This doesn’t necessarily apply to all of us or to all situations. In Matthew 10:19, Jesus was talking to his disciples as they were going to be brought before governors and kings for his sake. Jeremiah 1:9 also speaks of a specific person in a particular situation. It doesn’t say that everyone will speak this way. It also doesn’t say that these people will speak God’s perfect words all the time. Remember, too, that the disciples were learning from Jesus before they were ever sent out to speak for Him. God doesn’t always give us the perfect words, does He? How many times have you been misunderstood? How many times have you said something that was incorrect? How many times have you not been sure of what to say? How many times have you said something that hurt someone? 2. Consider what the Lord says about gaining wisdom or knowledge. Gaining wisdom and knowledge isn’t unnecessary or unbiblical. In fact, God tells us that there is more to knowledge than just knowing our Bibles. He says fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.” –Proverbs 1:7 “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever!” -Psalm 111:10 God's Word tells us to gain wisdom. “Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.” –Proverbs 4:7 3. We don’t apply the same thinking to other knowledge. If the Lord intended for us to gain all our wisdom and knowledge from the Bible, we would have no need of schools or institutions of higher learning. If God intended for us to be fed by Him everything we needed to know to live in this world, we wouldn’t need to learn a trade. We wouldn’t read books on business, personal development, or even devotionals. 4. Consider how many times God warns us about our communication. The Bible warns us to speak in grace, about being careful not to offend our brothers, and cautions us about our lips, mouths, tongues and words hundreds and hundreds of times. “Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.” -Colossians 4:6 “An offended brother is more unyielding than a fortified city, and disputes are like the barred gates of the citadel.” Proverbs 18:19 “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.” Proverbs 25:11 “Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.” -Proverbs 18:21 I do believe that God may call to mind a scripture as we are talking to someone, but God asks us to prepare for our encounters. “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:” 1Peter 3:15 Just as we prepare for our jobs, we should also prepare to communicate with others. I believe the Lord is pretty big on preparation. He prepares a woman’s body for children and He prepared the disciples for ministry. Consider the story/joke about the man sitting on the roof of his house during a flood waiting for God to rescue him. He let the boat and a helecopter go by because he was waiting on God. When he died, he asked God why He didn't save him from the flood. God said he sent him a boat and a helicopter! LOL In the same way, we need to use what God provides to prepare us to speak eloquently, persuasively and effectively. ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~ JoJo Tabares holds a degree in Speech Communication, but it is her humorous approach to communication skills which has made her a highly sought-after Christian speaker and writer. Her articles appear in homeschool publications, such as Homeschool Enrichment Magazine and The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, which also endorses her Say What You Mean curricula. You can also find JoJo on web sites such as Crosswalk.com and Dr.Laura.com. For more information on communication FUNdamentals and Christian-based communication skills for the whole family, please visit http://www.ArtofEloquence.com ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~ If you liked this post, read…Seven Reasons Why YOU Should Sign Up for the Art of Eloquence Newsletter!