Special Testimonies for Ministers and Workers—No. 7


Use of the Vocal Organs

Careful attention and training should be given to the vocal organs. They are strengthened by right use, but become enfeebled if used improperly. Their excessive use, as in preaching long sermons, will, if often repeated, not only injure the organs of speech, but will bring an undue strain upon the whole nervous system. The delicate harp of a thousand strings becomes worn, gets out of repair, and produces discord instead of melody. SpTA07 9.1

It is important for every speaker so to train the vocal organs as to keep them in a healthful condition, that he may speak forth the words of life to the people. Every one should become intelligent as to the most effective manner of using his God-given ability, and should practise what he learns. It is not necessary to talk in a loud voice or upon a high key; this does great injury to the speaker. Rapid talking destroys much of the effect of a discourse; for the words cannot be made so plain and distinct as if spoken more deliberately, giving the hearer time to take in the meaning of every word. The human voice is a precious gift of God; it is a power for good, and the Lord wants his servants to preserve its pathos and melody. The voice should be cultivated so as to promote its musical quality, that it may fall pleasantly upon the ear and impress the heart. But the vocal organs are strangely abused, greatly to the injury of the speaker, and the discomfort of the hearers. SpTA07 9.2

The Lord requires the human agent not to move by impulse in speaking, but to move calmly, speak slowly, and let the Holy Spirit give efficiency to the truth. Never think that in working yourselves up to a passion of delivery, speaking by impulse, and suffering your feelings to raise your voice to an unnaturally high key, that you are giving evidence of the great power of God upon you. All who learn in Christ's school, allowing God to work them, will cultivate the voice, so as to make the very best impression, and to honor the truth which they present to the people. The Lord demands an unreserved surrender of the body, soul, and spirit, that the divine power may work through all your energies and capabilities during the entire period of your service for him. SpTA07 10.1

Your influence is to be far-reaching, and your powers of speech should be under the control of reason. When you strain the organs of speech, the modulations of the voice are lost. The tendency to rapid speaking should be decidedly overcome. God claims of the human instrumentality all the service that man can give. All the talents entrusted to the human agent are to be cherished and appreciated, and used as a precious endowment of heaven. The laborers in the harvest-field are God's appointed agents, channels through which he can communicate light from heaven. The careless, improvident use of any of their God-given powers, lessens their efficiency, so that in an emergency, when the greatest good might be done, they are so weak and sickly and crippled that they can accomplish but little. SpTA07 10.2