“Gospel-centered communication versus competitive-centered communication.”

“60% of people using social media reported that it has impacted their self-esteem in a negative way. 50% reported social media having negative effects on their relationship. 80% reported that is easier to deceive others through their social posting.” Thrive Global

Competitive communication is more about winning and losing than understanding and edifying. Guarding our hearts and harnessing our tongues seems to be a low priority in today’s toxic social environment. For many, our first thought is making our point rather than understanding your heart; to persuade rather than listen.

This kind of competitive communication contradicts the other-centered nature of Mark 10:45, “For even the Son of Man came to serve and not be served.” This winning at all costs, especially on social media, always divides, never unites. We are not born to be humble. It is a learned discipline. Honor always comes out of humility. “Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that you know how to answer.” (Colossians 4:6)

As a young boy, I remember my grandmother washing my mouth out with soap for sassing her. The Bible says, “Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.” Soap in the mouth cannot cleanse disrespect in the heart.

Abundance of the mouth reflects the abundance of the heart. “Do not be quick with your mouth. Do not be hasty in your heart to utter anything before God. God is in heaven and you are on the earth, so let your words be few.” (Ecclesiastics 5:2)

The goal of Gospel-centered communication is to win the heart, not convince the mind and control the will of others. As Christians, we must speak to edify, not belittle, or condemn. Ephesians 4:29 says, “Let no corrupt communication come out of your mouth, but only as such is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to the hearer.” If you must get on social media platforms, be a redemptive communicator not a competitive in your face talker.

How do people feel after a conversation with you, in person or through social media? Proverbs 12:18 says, “The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” Many times, our silence is a gift from God. May God bless us all as we seek to honor Him not only in our words, but in our silence as well.

Do your words, in person or on social media, communicate the heart of the gospel or your personal desires? Do you want to win an argument, or gain a friend? When you finish speaking do people want to hear more, or wish you would talk less?