Language Is Not Math

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We often use metaphors to help us communicate. Sometimes the metaphor clouds what was clear without enhancement. Think about these military metaphors often used in business:

"Take the hill."

"Rally the troops."

"Defend the line."

Do sports analogies make things clearer?

"He hit it out of the ballpark."

"I didn't mean to throw you a curve ball"

"A good defense will beat a good offense."

Good metaphors make an emotional connection with the hearer.

Language is not math. Equations produce universal solutions. The calculus is not subjective.

Too often, we send a flurry of words without empathy for the hearer. Good communicators listen and speak from the heart. If we listen closely to a leader, we should hear words that deliver focus points. There should be little doubt about what matters most.

Consider the depth in these biblical metaphors:

"Jesus said to them, 'I am the bread of life'" (John 6:35).

"The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want" (Ps. 23:1).

"We are the clay and You are the Potter" (Isa. 64:8).

" I am the Light of the world" (John 8:12).

"The Lord is my rock, my fortress, my deliverer" (Ps. 18:2).

Spiritual metaphors are words to live by.

God is love.

Dr. Steve Greene is the publisher and executive vice president—Media Group, Charisma Media. Sign up here for Dr. Greene's leadership e-newsletter.

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