Jon Walker in his book, In Visible Fellowship: A Contemporary View of Bonhoeffer’s Classic Work:  Life Together writes in chapter 22 about speaking the truth in love. Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote…

God did make this person as I would have made him. He did give him to me as a brother to me to dominate and control, but in order that I might find above him the Creator.

This was a powerful chapter by Walker


Walker writes that The Big Idea is…

When we speak the truth in love, we bring out the best in one another. We are called to encourage and confront each other in the Body of Christ; in fact, it is a service we are expected to provide so we can all mature into the image of Jesus. we’re to speak words empowered by Jesus, not influenced by our own opinions of motives.  

Walker added:

Imagine how your life would change if you committed to never talking about another person’s faults unless that person was included in the conversations. 

How would that change your family? Your workplace? Your small group?

…What if we learned to speak the truth in love, helping one another to become more like Jesus?

Because we carry the Word within is, our rule is not to “use harmful words, but only helpful words, the kind that build up and provide what is needed, so that what you say will do good to those who hear you.” (Ephesians 4:29 TEV)

And this keeps our speech robust with love. We don’t demand and we don’t try to control others through our words.

Think about this: in heaven there will be no criticism, fault-finding, or mean-spirited judgment. We will speak in God’s language of love instead of Satan’s language of insult and put-down.

And if Satan will have no voice in eternity, he shouldn’t have a voice in us now!

(Jon WalkerIn Visible Fellowship: A Contemporary View of Bonhoeffer’s Classic Work: Life Together, Chapter 22)