I took a few days to visit in Ohio but took one morning to go to Panera Bread and do some reading and journaling. This is a combination of both Monday and Tuesday.
I’m calling this Spoken Words vs Unspoken Words.
It seems, at least to me, that we are a nation of spoken words. What I mean by that is that it is hard for us (for me) to keep my mouth shut. It’s almost like I/we are afraid of dead air. Tragically, when words are spoken it is more often than not words better left unsaid. A couple of Proverbs I’ve read recently are reminding me of the wisdom and prudence of keeping quiet, or at least of measuring my words before I speak.
“Whoever belittles his neighbor lacks sense, but a man of understanding remains silent.” Pr.11:12
It seems to me there is a lot of cynicism and sarcasm in our speech these days. It’s almost like we take delight in putting people “in their place.” To put it another way, we like to make people feel small. Sarcasm seems to be our sword of choice. Jab. Jab. Parry. Jab. Jab. Slash. Jab. Slash. Foe defeated.
But is it really a victory when we destroy someone else? I think not. At best, it is a hollow one. How can I consider it a victory when I have sliced and diced a neighbor-a flesh and blood person just me- into mincemeat? How can there be a good feeling in that? I would think that as a follower of Christ that even putting an “enemy” to mush would not further the cause of Christ. That’s not saying we shouldn’t defend our faith, and at times ourselves, but does that mean “crushing” the very soul of another? Again, I think not. I have found if people had their mind made up, sarcasm and slashing, slicing and dicing will not soften their heart but harden them.
Oh yeah, that other Proverb. “There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” 12:18
“Father, help me in my choice of words to not choose those that drip with sarcasm but give life. let me not be so intent on ‘winning’ that I kill others so that it really results in a hollow victory. Let me remain silent if that is the result.” Choose life Bill.
I know this is a little long but it is two days worth of Proverbs reading put into one devotion. Thanks for hanging in there with me while I was gone.Tags: Christian Living, Lifestyle, Ministry, Opinion, Scripture look, Speech