Communicating with Grace and Virtue

Learning to Listen, Speak, Text, and Interact as a Christian

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About

Communications expert Quentin Schultze offers an engaging and practical guide to help Christians interact effectively at home, work, church, school, and beyond. Based on solid biblical principles and drawn from Schultze's own remarkable experiences, this book shows how to practice "servant communication" for a rich and rewarding life. Topics include how to overcome common mistakes, be a more grateful and virtuous communicator, tell stories effectively, reduce conflicts, overcome fears, and communicate well in a high-tech world. Helpful sidebars and text boxes are included.

Contents

Introduction
1. Accept the Call
Communicating for Life
Communicating in Culture
Learning Great Communication
Communicating Courageously
Examining Our Motives
Conclusion
2. Offer Thanks
Engaging Our Hearts
Receiving Gratitude
Using Symbols
Employing Verbal and Nonverbal Language
Sending and Receiving "Texts"
Sharing Understanding
Contextualizing Communication
Doing Communication
Understanding with Discernment
Conclusion
3. Be Responsible
Communicating Responsibly in God's Name
Listening Obediently
Listening Intimately
Listening Actively
Listening Dialogically
Listening Vertically
Communicating with Excellence and Compassion
Communicating "Christianly"
Embracing Confusion
Conclusion
4. Address Brokenness
Accepting Imperfection
Being Vulnerable
Sharing Appropriately
Sharing Healing
Identifying Our Biases
Blaming Others
Releasing Control
Sinning by Omission
Sinning by Commission
Confessing Regularly
Conclusion
5. Embrace Community
Growing Together
Knowing Ourselves in Community
Nurturing Shalom
Embracing Diversities
Questioning Stereotypes
Nurturing Trust
Seeking Truth Together
Forming Truth-Loving Communities
Conclusion
6. Be Virtuous
Being Genuine
Seeking Integrity
Being Joyful
Embracing Peace
Being Patient
Being Kind
Being Good
Being Gentle
Being Self-Controlled
Conclusion
7. Tell Stories
How Stories Work
Communicating Indirectly
Capturing Metaphors
Mapping Life
Engaging Comedies and Tragedies
Interpreting Stories through the Biblical Metanarrative
Critiquing Media Mythologies
Conclusion
8. Discern Media
Defining Technology
Communicating with Media Technologies
Jesus Broadcasts His Message
Elevating the Spoken Word
Fitting Medium to Message
Rejecting Communication Technology
Adapting Communication Technologies
Creating Communication Technologies
Conclusion
Closing Thoughts


Endorsements

"Schultze reveals the basics of truly good communication practices, making them accessible and showing why understanding communication is vitally important for the Christian life. He digs into his years of experience as a professional communicator, Christian leader, and as a human who has had to struggle with his own weaknesses, to reveal deep insights into how communication skills are an important aspect of serving God."

Steve Perry, communication professor, Regent University

"Schultze's remarkable ability to help others form, nurture, and repair relationships takes center stage in this splendid book. He emphasizes our need for gratitude since our communication is a gift from God. Such gratefulness informs our attitudes toward others and leads us to flourish relationally with virtue, grace, and beauty. I thank him for such a heart-forming book for all of us who teach, mentor, and serve others."

Stephanie Bennett, communication professor, Palm Beach Atlantic University

"A truly unique work that marries academic principles with practical applications for spiritual formation. This book will be right at home in a Bible study, freshman orientation, or a university course."

Tom Carmody, communication professor, Vanguard University

"A rare book--a wealth of practical, biblical truths for communicating faithfully as we accept and embrace our own fragile and broken selves. Schultze's heart-rending and heart-warming stories demonstrate how brokenness is an integral part of communicating with grace and virtue."

Diane M. Badzinski, chair and professor of communication, Colorado Christian University

"I can envision this book helping me to connect with my students and helping my students to connect with God and themselves so they can be wise and faithful servant communicators. I love it."

Bob Gustafson, professor of communication, Moody Bible Institute

"Over the years, I have been inspired personally and professionally as I interacted with Quentin Schultze on various projects. Like few others, he has a unique ability to combine insights from the content of his field (communication) with treasures from the storehouse of his deep Christian faith commitment. While much has been written about how to be an effective public speaker or an engaged listener, this book reminds us of the profound need to communicate in transparent and life-giving ways--particularly in a world that seems to be increasingly divided and often despairing."

Karen A. Longman, PhD program director and professor, Department of Higher Education, Azusa Pacific University

"Quentin Schultze has done it again! This wonderful new book will help you rediscover the joy of communicating, even in situations of brokenness and despair. Relationships are so important in our lives, yet they can so easily become hurtful. I want to reread this book until the advice seeps into my soul and guides my interactions as a servant communicator. Schultze gives brilliant and all-encompassing advice, not just surface information that we already know. I believe that this special book will lead all who read it to treasure and use well this gift of communication that God has given us. We will all be better and godlier people for heeding his wise words."

Kathleen Sindorf, communication professor, workshop leader, and video producer, Cornerstone University

"All of us need this book, but particularly young readers experiencing fear, anxiety, and depression in a society where people increasing 'shoot' (with words and other things) before thinking. Schultze calls us to communicate from our brokenness, our deepest souls. It's the kind of communication for which God made us--and which we crave."

Michael Longinow, professor of journalism and integrated media, Biola University

"Schultze boldly ventures into our era of vice and viciousness with a call to communicate our stories in ways that engage, encourage, and enchant others. This wonderful book draws from our Christian tradition of both listening and expressing ourselves, giving it current application through various means--from silence to smartphones. It makes us better communicators and even guides us to become better people."

Terry Lindvall, C. S. Lewis Chair of Communication and Christian Thought, Virginia Wesleyan College

"Drawing from a lifetime of teaching and scholarship, Schultze models the intelligence, wisdom, and Christlike vulnerability that we need today more than ever. I wish more Christians were so brave."

Naaman Wood, professor of media and communication, Redeemer University, Ontario

"In a time of rage and rancor, Schultze shows how we can communicate in ways that honor God and neighbor. The book is perfect for college students, church leaders, and practitioners seeking a theologically sound approach to improving communication through a growing heart and focused practice. This book weaves the inner attitudes Christians need--gratitude, discretion, listening, and humility--with practical application in community, storytelling, and media use."

Elizabeth McLaughlin, communication professor, Bethel University

"Over the last three decades university students have rushed to communications studies, a discipline with obvious public application. The works of Quentin Schultze are no small reason for this surge. He writes with a practitioner's experience and a researcher's insight. Students have grown confident and mindful under his guidance--more prone to embrace virtue and less to admire just technique. This book is a fresh look at the human condition through the eyes of a soulful scholar who writes well for all audiences."

Mark Fackler, communication professor emeritus, Calvin University

"Weaving together poignant personal stories and a careful reading of Scripture, Schultze offers a rich tapestry of insights that invite us all to communicate with grace and virtue."

David Balzer, professor of communications and media, Canadian Mennonite University

"This is a comprehensive, compelling introduction to the gift, ministry, and joys of communication. It is a veritable treasure chest of definitions worth remembering, stories worth retelling, and challenges worth pondering."

Paul Patton, professor of communication, Spring Arbor University

"What a gracious call to consider the God-given roots of communication and our ongoing responsibility to measure our rhetoric. Highly recommended."

Craig Detweiler, author of iGods: How Technology Shapes Our Spiritual and Social Lives

"Quentin Schultze has influenced my understanding of communication and of teaching more than anyone. If I had only one communication text to teach any class in the discipline, this would be my choice."

Dan Fultz, professor of communication, Cedarville University

"This book is immensely helpful and illuminating to anyone aspiring to be an effective communicator. Through his own authenticity and vulnerability, Schultze models an approach to communication that is both effective and disarming. Schultze's skills as a scholar and as a professional communicator shine on every page."

Benson Fraser, Westminster Canterbury Fellow for Religious Studies and Lifelong Learning, Virginia Wesleyan University

"Our culture uses words to divide and conquer. We prize rhetoric that is accented with sarcasm and loaded with cynicism. It happens in our families, our jobs, our politics, and our churches. In his latest book, Schultze makes a compelling case for another way: servant communication. This is communication that requires a genuine empathy for the other. Brilliant in its simplicity, Schultze's book is utterly transformational."

David McFadzean, writer and film and TV producer (Home Improvement)

"Schultze paints a winsome picture for communication firmly grounded in biblical principles. This book is a thought-provoking reflection on how Christ-centered convictions can season all of our interactions. It is for everyone wondering what it looks and sounds like to communicate in a way that conveys the wisdom and joy of the Lord."

Josh Danaher, professor and chair of communication, Grand Canyon University

"Schultze teaches us how to live as servant communicators. He braids together relatable personal and contemporary examples, ancient biblical and theological wisdom, and relevant communication scholarship and theory. This three-strand cord makes this text a must-read for Christians vested in the practice and study of good communication."

Jonathan Pettigrew, professor of communication, Arizona State University


The Author

  1. Quentin J. Schultze
    © Corriveau Photography

    Quentin J. Schultze

    Quentin J. Schultze (PhD, University of Illinois) is a speaker, mentor, consultant, and professor of communication emeritus at Calvin University in Grand Rapids, Michigan. His many books include Communicate like a True Leader, An Essential Guide...

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