«Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers»(Ephesians 4:29)
Cecil was a young man with a brilliant intellect. He spoke several languages perfectly and could translate them flawlessly. But he had serious interpersonal relationships problems. He did not know how to initiate a conversation; if others initiated it, he did not know how to maintain it; it was difficult for him to express his appreciation and gratitude; he remained speechless and motionless every time he met a friend and he was clueless about when or how to use phrases like “please,» «thank you,» or «pleasure talking to you.» And when he was speaking, he ended up sending inappropriate messages and even harmful ones. To sum up, he deeply lacked the most basic social skills. Despite his privileged intelligence, he was not able to get along with people close to him, nor develop intimate relationships.
Daniel Goleman recounts the story of Cecil in his book Emotional Intelligence to exemplify how the lack of a strong social component affects emotional intelligence. Psychologists discovered that Cecil had a self-esteem problem and the insecurity of not being able to say something interesting to others. In order to help him, they had to teach him to send warm and welcoming messages and to avoid cold and offensive phrases.
When it comes to behavior rural sciences, it is a well-known fact that the ability to initiate and maintain social relationships is more valuable for professional and personal success than any other skill, including intellectual skills. Its value goes even further to include character development and Christian behavior. In Ephesians 4, the apostle Paul explains what the new life in Christ should be. Essentially, all the moral qualities he describes point to a harmonious coexistence. We are urged to speak truth of one another (v. 25), not to get angry(v. 26), not to steal from one another (v. 28), to use words that edify and praise the listener (v. 29), not to spread hate, fighting, or slander (v. 31) but to be merciful and generous with one another (v. 32).
Our words and our attitude have very different results. Choose today to use words that edify others
—words that show kindness and mercy and extend grace to the listener; words that would be a balm for others and a source of self-esteem to you. Words that, ultimately, God uses to benefit us all bringing Him glory.