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In a church meeting, someone proposed that the next budget include money for new chandeliers. One brother in the back said, “I object. What we really need is some new lights.” Finding common language that everybody understands has always been a challenge. But until we find common language, we often end up in arguments and misunderstandings. Educators say the main reason many students don’t do well in school is because they can’t understand textbook language. That is not only true when it comes to textbooks; it is also true in the way we speak to each other. It is perhaps why the Apostle Paul spoke to our need to understand each other. He was addressing the issue of using tongues in worship, but his answer can apply to other communication as well. He used himself as an example in 1 Corinthians chapter 14. He said, “I will pray in the spirit, and I will also pray in words I understand. I will sing in the spirit, and I will also sing in words I understand. For if you praise God only in the spirit, how can those who don’t understand you praise God along with you? How can they join you in giving thanks when they don’t understand what you are saying?” So using common language on any subject is valuable, whether in preaching, teaching, or talking to your spouse, children, or friends.

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