Sermon Summary (plus bonus content): Two Communication Skills Every Person Needs (2/19/17)


How to Say Good Things: Affirmations

 The Power of Words

“The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” (Proverbs 18:21)

1. Words CREATE

“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light.” (Genesis 1:1-3)
“In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.” (John 1:1-3)

2. Words HEAL

“Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.” (Proverbs 16:24)
“The tongue that brings healing is a tree of life, but a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit.” (Proverbs 15:4)
“An anxious heart weighs a man down, but a kind word cheers him up.” (Proverbs 12:25)

3. Words REVEAL

"Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life. Put away perversity from your mouth; keep corrupt talk far from your lips. Let your eyes look straight ahead, fix your gaze directly before you. Make level paths for your feet and take only ways that are firm. Do not swerve to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil.” (Proverbs 4:23-27)
"Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit…For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks. The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him.” (Matthew 12:33-35)



  • Sit knee-to-knee, eye-to-eye.
  • Husbands lead. Wives follow.
  • Say to one other: “I affirm you for ___________.”
    Fill in the blank with a personality characteristic that you see in your spouse.
  • Do not make a back-handed affirmation – that’s when you say something positive but then throw in a negative.

How to Say Tough Things:
"I" Statements & Reflective Listening

A Biblical Call for Good Communication During Conflict

Our Words Should…

  • Please God – “May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.” (Psalm 19:14)
  • Be Controlled – “Set guard over my mouth, O Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips. Let not my heart be drawn to what is evil, to take part in wicked deeds.” (Psalm 141:3-4)
  • Encourage Others – “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” (Ephesians 4:29)
  • Improve Situations – “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger…The tongue that brings healing is a tree of life, but a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit.” (Proverbs 15:1,4)
  • Be Truthful – “Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body.” (Ephesians 2:25)


  • Managing Image
  • Interrupting
  • Intellectualizing
  • Assuming
  • Personalizing

How We Mess Up…TALKING

  • Saying Too Little
  • Saying Too Much
  • Attacking the Other Person
  • Being Indirect: Not Saying What You Really Mean
  • Being Insincere: Saying What You Really Don’t Mean

“I” Statements &
Reflective Listening

This is a combination of statements and responses that help the speaker communicate more clearly and the listener gain a better understanding of what the other person said. 


LISTENER: Reflective Listening

 “What I heard you say is that you feel _______
when I ________.”
(Summarize what was said)

“Did I get that right?” (Check it out)

“Is there more?” (Encourage more discussion)

  • Gain Understanding (Seek clarification)
  • Develop Empathy (Connect with emotions)
  • Encourage Communication (Ask for more)
  • Express Care & Concern (Listen, listen, listen)


SPEAKER: “I” Statements

“I feel __________ when you __________.”

  • Be Direct (Say what you mean)
  • Be Honest (Mean what you say)
  • Be Open (Share thoughts and feelings)
  • Be Responsible (Focus on yourself)
  • Be Known (Connect deeply)

Avoid “kindergarten” emotion words, 
like sad, mad, frustrated.
Instead use meaningful emotion words