Good morning. It is Tuesday, June 7, 2022. Jeanette Stark here.
“Colassae was a church primarily made up of Gentiles. In his book to the Colossians, Paul highlights how our relationship with Jesus impacts our interactions in the workplace. In this context, we find one of the most significant passages in all of scripture on how to relate to secular people.
“Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” (Colossians 4:5-6 NIV).
“Outsiders” refers to those who are encountered in the workplace, who are not part of the community of believers. Paul is concerned about how believers interact with secular people. He highlights this later: “…that you may walk properly toward those who are outside” (1 Thessalonians 4:12).
The following principles should inform our conversations:
1. Make the most of every opportunity.
2. Use wisdom/skill.
3. Demonstrate grace.
4. Add flavor (seasonings) to their lives. The experience should transform.
5. Customize your approach to each person.
The seasonings we add are wisdom and grace. The language implies that these spices enhance the flavor of what we share, making it pleasant and wholesome. But how do we know what approach to take? If we take a look at the previous two verses, Colossians 4:2-3, we notice a word that is repeated twice: “prayer.”
Our lives should be propelled forward through prayer. As we are connected through prayer, the Holy Spirit will give us the wisdom and grace required to season people’s lives with the transformational message of the gospel” (Source: Life-Changing Divine Appointments by Tom L. Evans)
That little book has set on my desk for a few months now. I reach for it from time to time and this morning, the above, resonated with me.
Can I be the first to say, I am not perfect.
Sometimes my actions do not reflect the Jesus I want to be more like. Sometimes my words are not His words, and my thoughts are not His thoughts. But I so desperately want to be more like Him. I long for a time in my life when my first thought is “How does Jesus want me to react?” Instead of that quick knee-jerk reaction that often leads to hurt feelings and separation. I need my first reaction to be going immediately to God in prayer, asking for the power of the Holy Spirit to handle the situation, and myself, in the proper way. No, I am not perfect, but I am better than I was.
Colossians 4:5-6 said …Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt…
Why? …so that you may know how to answer everyone.”
In that same little book, the author relates a story where a guy, 2 ½ hours from home, pulled off the highway to take advantage of a great price on a haircut. As he sat in the chair, the woman began to share her recent life journey. Suffice it to say the family was hurting, she was hurting, finances were tight, emotions were hard to navigate. The woman said she didn’t know where to turn for help. Her pain was palpable. When the haircut was finished, he thanked her and paid her and got back on the highway.
When he got home, he shared with his wife the story of this woman. His wife looked him straight in the eyes and asked, “Did you share Jesus with her?” He couldn’t believe it. It hadn’t even crossed his mind.
How many missed opportunities do we encounter in our daily lives where we could have added some seasoning to a person’s life.
Matthew 5:13 says we are the salt of the earth. If salt loses its flavor, what good is it?
The Romans believed that other than the sun, there was nothing more valuable than salt. In fact, Romans were paid in salt, which is where the phrase “He’s not worth his salt” was coined. Salt was also considered a mark of friendship. When two people shared salt, they were bound to look after one another’s welfare, even if they were previously enemies. Salt also was used to bind a covenant between two parties. It was a form of notarization. Parties would eat salt in the presence of witnesses to confirm the covenant. Therefore, when Christ called the disciples salt of the earth, these aspects would have naturally come to their minds. Salt was extremely valuable and so were they. (Source: bible.org)
Salt adds flavor, but salt has another side effect. It makes you thirsty. Let’s pledge to be saltier, making those around us thirsty for living water.
“And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment.” Revelation 21:6 ESV