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Sunday, January 13, 2013

Virtue Challenge: Grace and Sincerity

(Elyse is participating in YALs Virtue Challenge. Last week's virtue was "Graceful and Sincere."
She will be posting weekly about her experiences. You will find more about the Virtue Challenge and a linkup of posts here. Elyse is 18 years old. She is a sophomore in college working toward a degree in Microbiology. She assists in the Veil Shop and enjoys reading, writing, and time with friends.)

Week One: Grace and Sincerity

So here’s my first report! The virtues I worked on this week were being graceful and sincere. At first I couldn’t think of what I should write about, but then I thought of something that had happened to me over the past couple of weeks and thought that it was both relevant and fitting.

Before I explain the circumstances, I’d like to make one thing clear: I hate hurting people. The hardest thing for me to do is tell someone “no” when I know it will upset them. So being graceful and sincere in these circumstances always proves a little tough for me. (It’s always a little awkward for me to talk about this particular thing because I feel like I’m trying to draw attention to myself.) I also haven't written blog posts before, so bear with me! As soon as I get used to it, the posts will likely be more meaningful and expressive.

Gaston de La Touche [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
A few months ago I met a boy. We became friends pretty quickly. He asked me out once, and I told him I didn’t think we were compatible as gently as I could. However, I was convinced that he still might be interested in me. This lasted a few weeks, and I expressed my concerns to a few of my friends who knew him well. They kept telling me to “break his heart” since, apparently, that’s the only way to get through to him. I didn’t understand why they kept telling me to do something that I found harsh and cruel, so I put it off, hoping that he would get the message. But it also wasn’t fair of me to hide behind my nerves and to not tell it to him straight. He deserved to hear the truth.

The other night I was spending time with another friend, one who also knew this boy well, and the topic arose again because it had still been rankling me. He explained to me that being cruel wasn’t necessary, but being blunt was. I had to be truthful and clear. Clear, but clear didn't mean harsh. 

I was lucky enough that, just that night, I had a conversation with the boy that allowed me to sneak in informing him that I wasn’t interested in anyone. I told the truth, but I didn’t specifically target him and we both got away unscathed. 

Colossians 4:6
Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.

- Elyse

This was part one of a series.  Part two is here.

Elyse will be linking up her Virtue Challenge posts here:

(You are invited to link up too.)

For more about the Virtue Challenge,
Visit YAL:

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Blogs on the Blog Hops page.


  1. Congrats on your first blog post! Don't sell yourself short - I found it both meaningful and expressive! :) I think the verse you chose from Colossians was fitting for the circumstances you found yourself in. Well done!

    I'm looking forward to more of these. Best wishes!

  2. That's a beautiful way to be clear but nice. My daughter just had to have the same kind of conversation with a boy. Everybody needs grace mixed in with bad news, so I'm glad both she and you showed grace to your perspective male friends.

  3. I think that is one of the most important times when graceful sincerity is needed. Your message wasn't a personal attack, it is you who is not interested in him, and the message needed to be understood to avoid his wasted time and effort and feelings. Kudos to you for finding that practical application. I look forward to more posts from you.

  4. I agree with Michele. Letting our speech be gracious sometimes means telling a hard truth. I think you were very brave and wise!


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