CORRECTION OF RAPID SPEECH
Rapidity of speech can and should be corrected. The
teacher must learn daily in the school of Christ, that he may
speak in such a way as to make the best and most lasting
impression upon his hearers. The appointed guardian of
truth, he must conscientiously guard the sacred treasures.
He is not to gather only a limited number of surface truths,
but is to purchase the field, that he may possess the treasure
it contains. He is to seek to improve in methods of labor, and
make the very best use of the organs of speech. If the words
of truth are of sufficient importance to be spoken before an
audience, they are of sufficient importance to be spoken
distinctly. The guidance of the Spirit never leads to indistinctness
of speech. The Spirit takes the things of God and
presents them through the human instrument to the people.
Then let them come from our lips in the most perfect manner
ERRORS OF VOLUME AND SPEED
The Lord designs that every minister shall reach perfection
in his work, overcoming everything in voice, in attitude,
in manner of address, which would lessen his influence.
This it is his duty to do. “Be ye therefore perfect,” Christ
says, “even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect”
It is natural for us to expect more from the ministration
of the man whose manner of address and tone of voice is
attractive than from him whose ways do not please. Two
men may handle the same Scriptures and bear a full gospel
testimony; one, because he has been careful to overcome
his defective pronunciation, because he has learned to control
his voice, not allowing it to swell to a high key, may be
a most successful worker; the other may have a knowledge
of the Word, yet he leaves an impression upon his audience
that is not agreeable. He appears excited, and all who hear
him wish that he would calm down and talk earnestly, but
calmly and unexcitedly.
By talking in a high key, the speaker detracts considerably
from his usefulness. There are others who talk so low
that their words can scarcely be heard. Another laborer will
speak hurriedly, rushing his words one upon another. Half
that he says is lost, for the hearer cannot take in the precious
words coming from his lips. These are defects which should
The habit should be acquired of speaking slowly, yet
earnestly and solemnly, with all the assurance which the
Word of God can give. Then the hearer gets the benefit of
every sentence. Every word is spoken distinctly, and makes
its impression upon the minds. Rapid speaking and pitching
the voice to a high key is an imperfection which every one
should overcome if he would make the most favorable impression
when bearing the message from God to the world.
Let the Word of God come as a savor of life unto life.
If God’s servants will consider this matter rationally, if
they will place themselves under the control of sound reason
and good judgment, they will see that these errors need
not be perpetuated. They will see that such defects can be
overcome, and their efforts in the pulpit be of far greater
advantage to the hearers, and far less taxing to themselves.
Every minister should bear in mind that he is giving to the
people the message which God has given him, and that this
word involves eternal interests.
TRUTH AT HALF VALUE
Speak the truth in love and in pity for those who turn
the truth to fables. Bear in mind the fact that the Lord Jesus
is present in your assemblies. He would have you manifest
dignity, calmness, and composure of spirit. When you rush
one word right upon another, half the power is taken out of
This article is excerpted from the book The Voice in Speech and
Song, pp 258-260, by Ellen G. White.