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4.14.2005    |    Brevity is the soul of the soul
One of my flaws as a writer is that I tend towards being prolix. In my career, I also tended to talk too much. Over the years, however, I learned the wisdom of the adage, "less is more." I also learned, the hard way, that it is ever so much easier to write many words than to write few words on any given topic.

My writing today may not be much better, but I do at least try to use fewer words. All along, I ignored some rather specific pieces of guidance from God on the subject of words, and I wish I had taken them to heart a lot sooner than I did. The first is from our Lord, and is blunt:
Let what you say be simply "Yes" or "No"; anything more than this comes from evil. (Matthew 5:37)
This is in the context of not swearing falsely, but seems rather good advice all around. Just imagine if everyone spoke the plain truth, no embellishment. Think of all the politicians, lawyers, and salesmen who'd be out of work. Not to mention quite a few pundits, and, who knows, a preacher or two.

The second piece of guidance concerns words used in prayer, and in Matthew 6:7, Jesus warns us to "not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words." In this, the Lord restates advice given by His Father to the Preacher, who tells us in Ecclesiastes 5:2:
Be not rash with your mouth, nor let your heart be hasty to utter a word before God, for God is in heaven and you are on earth. Therefore let your words be few.
Think on this the next time you sit through some unending liturgy or sermon, and, with charity, pray that the author of too many words will take this advice to heart.

Myself not excluded.

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About this site and the author

Welcome. My name is John Luke Rich, (very) struggling Christian. The focus here is Christianity in its many varieties, its fussing and feuding, how it impacts our lives and our society, with detours to consider it with other faiths (or lack thereof).

Call this blog my way of evangelizing on the internet.

Putting it differently, we're only here on this earth a short time. It's the rest of eternity that we should be most concerned about. Call it the care and feeding of our souls.

I was born Jewish, and born again in Christ Jesus over thirty years ago. First as a Roman Catholic; now a Calvinist by persuasion and a Baptist by denomination. But I'm hardly a poster boy for doctrinal rigidity.

I believe that Scripture is the rock on which all Christian churches must stand -- or sink if they are not so grounded. I believe that we are saved by faith, but hardly in a vacuum. That faith is a gift from God, through no agency on our part -- although we sometimes turn a deaf ear and choose to ignore God's knocking on the door.

To be Christian is to evangelize. Those who think it not their part to evangelize perhaps haven't truly understood what our Lord told us in Matthew 28. We must preach the Gospel as best we are able. Using words if necessary.

Though my faith waxes and wanes, it never seems to go away. Sometimes I wish it would, to give me some peace of mind. But then, Jesus never said that walking with Him was going to be easy...

Final note: I also blog as Jack Rich on cultural, political and other things over at Wrong Side of the Tracks

Thanks for stopping by.