The written word.  There is an amazing power in it.  Nothing can change a heart in such a radical way.  However, when we read words, there is a particular thing that happens.  We usually hear things that we read in our voice, or a voice of our choosing. 

Recently, there have been a number of heavy discussions that friends have had about a number of volatile issues.  I have had my share as well.  Sadly, when speaking about tough issues, the cliché of an argument being two people talking, no one listening tends to hold true.

One of my friends, took it on the chin recently by bringing up an issue that many people literally yell at one another over.  By sharing her point of view in writing, it opened up a floodgate of verbal abuse and derivisity.   No one discussed the merits of what she said, and she was left feeling shell-shocked and raw.  I had the same type of situation, and a friend who I wrote something to who completely flew off the handle.  Apparently, the written word is really limited in one aspect… you cannot communicate tone of voice, nor the nuances of communication.

People too easily are willing to point out differences… and with only the written word to go by, we get to make up what we think they other person is saying.  It just underlines the differences and discrepancies and doesn’t promote actual discussion.  To quote Melody Harrison Hanson:

“I do not believe we will ever convince one another in a different direction over the internet or with the written word. I just don’t believe it will happen. Debate, discussion and healthy disagreements can only happen face-to-face.”

I suppose that is why the spoken word was how God chose to reach His people.  The Word was spoken… the Word became flesh and dwelled amoung us.  The Word is alive.  All I know is that I would rather have a discussion than an argument.  There are too many people that would rather talk, argue, yell… and not listen.