Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines have tender grapes. Song of Solomon 2:15.
God requires us to be right in important matters, while He tells us that faithfulness in little things will fit us for higher positions of trust….
The good qualities which many possess are hidden, and instead of attracting souls to Christ they repulse them. If these persons could see the influence of their uncourteous ways and unkind expressions upon unbelievers, and how offensive is such conduct in the sight of God, they would reform their habits, for a lack of courtesy is one of the greatest stumbling blocks to sinners. Selfish, complaining, sour Christians bar the way, so that sinners do not care to approach Christ.
Could we look beneath the surface of things, we should see that half life’s misery is created by frowns and unkind speeches, which might be prevented as well as not. Many make a hell upon earth for themselves and for those whom they might comfort and bless. These are not worthy of the Christian name….
Some persons speak in a harsh, uncourteous manner, that wounds the feeling of others, and then they justify themselves by saying, “It is my way; I always tell just what I think”; and they exalt this wicked trait of character as a virtue. Their uncourteous deportment should be firmly rebuked.18The Review and Herald, September 1, 1885.
That unkind word should be left unspoken, that selfish disregard for the happiness of others should give place to sympathy and thoughtfulness. True courtesy, blended with truth and justice, will make the life not only useful, but fragrant….
Integrity, justice, and Christian kindness, blended, make a beautiful combination. Courtesy is one of the graces of the Spirit. It is an attribute of heaven. The angels never fly into a passion, never are envious, selfish, and jealous. No harsh or unkind words escape their lips. And if we are to be the companions of angels, we too must be refined and courteous.19The Review and Herald, September 1, 1885.