To Talk or Not To Talk

The Dangers of Talking

Have you ever stopped to consider how much time you spend talking? How many telephones do you have in your home? I dare say that most of us would have two or more. In addition to home phones, we can now be reached while shopping! It is called a cell phone. If it isn’t ringing due to someone trying to reach us, we are the ones trying to reach them. I was recently in an accident and had decided from that day on that I would never talk on my cell phone while driving, but I just couldn’t handle it. It’s addictive! We have to talk, and most of the time the conversation doesn’t amount to very much.

Ladies, the more we are found talking, the more we are in danger of saying something that shouldn’t be said. I have been involved in different conversations and before I could blink it turned into a gossip session. I have said things before that have hurt people or would have if they had known what had been said. The old phrase “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me” may be cute, but there isn’t a bit of truth to it.

Consider the following verses:

  • Proverbs 31:26  She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
  • Psalm 34:13  Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile.
  • Proverbs 18:8  “The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.”
  • Psalm 35:28  And my tongue shall speak of thy righteousness and of thy praise all the day long.
  • Proverbs 15:2  The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of fools poureth out foolishness.

A Time to Listen

I am reminded of a time that I wish could be erased from history. I was having a hard time accepting something, and I started asking others what they thought of the situation. That was the worst thing I could have done. I should have gone straight to God with my concerns. This is not to say that you shouldn’t go to godly men or women for counseling.

The Bible says in Proverbs 19:20, “Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that thou mayest be wise in thy latter end.”  I wasn’t seeking godly counsel. The fact is, there is no going back to erase anything. What has been done has been done. I now get to live with what happened. I will say that the Lord has used that situation for good. I was taught some things during that trial.

Another thing to consider is that we cannot talk and listen at the same time. God didn’t give us that ability. I don’t know about you, but when I am in a serious conversation I like the person to be listening to me intently. How can that person listen when they are most likely waiting to speak themselves? Do you find yourself dominating a conversation? Do you ever feel like you have to say everything that is on your mind?

The Bible says in Proverbs 29:11, “A fool uttereth all his mind: but a wise man keepeth it in till afterwards.” It would be a good thing for you to pray that God show you when you are uttering all your mind. Just this past week the Lord showed me in a conversation that I needed to stop talking. The conversation was harmless, but it was time to listen.

So what do we do now?

  • First , pray before you speak. The Bible says in Proverbs 29:20  “Seest thou a man that is hasty in his words? there is more hope of a fool than of him.”  There are times when you may be required to speak at a moment’s notice. When you wake up in the morning, why not ask the Lord to help you speak only what He wants you to speak when He wants you to speak. I believe God will honor your request.
  • Second, next time you are in a conversation, concentrate on listening to what the other person is saying, and not on what you are anxious to say. If listening is something that you do not do very well, practice. Go to a nursing home and just visit with the elderly. I am sure they have stories they would love to share with someone. Visit with a widow that you may know from your church. I think we sometimes take for granted that we have multiple people with whom we may engage in a conversation.
  • Third, read through Proverbs. Time and time again we are told to incline our ear, to listen, and to hear. For example, wisdom is crying out and we are to hear her. I would like to encourage you to seek the Lord today and ask Him to guide your tongue, stop your mouth, and open your ears.
Lula Ray

Daily Proverb

Proverbs 21:16

The man that wandereth out of the way of understanding shall remain in the congregation of the dead.