“A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.”
Almost didn’t click on this post did you? You read “phenomenal” and “awesome” and thought: I doubt it. We almost daily read these words on-line or hear them spoken by newscasters… and almost always… we are let down. Words are framed in our sentences today not so much for apt expression as they are to command attention… like a neon yellow yard sale sign. We make a statement… by overstating.
One anchor for Good Morning America recently spoke of a YouTube video to be shown later in their broadcast that had already “sent shock waves around the world!” Really? People in India were stunned by it?
Retailer Target recently failed to have enough of their Missoni product to please consumers. After a Memphis woman received an email from Target explaining her order would be delayed, she responded: “I feel violated. I feel taken advantage of…” Really? Violated? Isn’t that word usually reserved for a victim of rape? Is it even right to use that word in connection with the loss of designer dishes and clothing?
I believe that our dialogue in this country, between parties, between denominations, actually between any two parties that have differences, has become ineffectual because too often our language is LARGE and charged! Can we scale our verbage back a bit in order to truly communicate with one another? The way of wisdom says we should strive to find the word that is “fitting” in our conversations.
In the next few blogs I am going to attempt to flesh out what an “apt” word is. But it is, first of all, intelligible. Do we seek with our choice of words to communicate or to impress?
A three-and-a-half-year-old boy was sitting with his father eating an apple. After several bites the boy asked, “Daddy, why is my apple turning brown?” His father answered, “Because after you ate the skin off, the meat of the apple came into contact with the air which caused it to oxidize thus changing its molecular structure and turning it into a different color.”
After a lengthy pause, the son asked, “Daddy, are you talking to me?” (Dave Stone, Refining Your Style, p. 61.)
Ever been in a conversation where it is clear that the other person is talking… but you’re not sure that you’re the audience? An apt word seeks more to be understood than to be memorable.
Let every post posted, every Facebook status updated and every Tweet tweeted be filled with that which is fitting.. an apt depiction of your heart. Let it be a bowl of golden apples in a bowl made of sterling silver… a beautiful work of art.