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Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Silence Is Golden

I am a preacher. I make a living by talking. Lots of people tell me that they don't know how I do it. They say that they are glad they don't have to stand in front of hundreds of people each week and talk. It's easy for me. I don't think about it.

I think about being quiet. However, I must not think about it too much because I continue to talk when I really should have been quiet.

Knowing when to open your mouth and when to shut comes from wisdom. It is foolish to speak when it is unnecessary. O that I  would ever learn this!

I like to laugh and make people laugh. This desire overrules wisdom. I say things that are neither appropriate nor funny. These things cause me to look foolish, careless, uncaring, arrogant and, sometimes, like a big jerk!

And you can't unsay anything that you have said. You can say that you wish you hadn't said it but it is still indelibly etched into the minds of the hearers. So is their opinions of what you said.

I don't have a problem talking in front of people I have a problem shutting up.

I keep thinking the pain of each appropriate statement I have made will teach me this lesson. So far, I am still talking when I should be quiet.

I understand the statement "Silence is golden" differently from others. It isn't that I need to hear silence. I just need to be silent.

Proverbs 17:28 (ESV) 28 Even a fool who keeps silent is considered wise; when he closes his lips, he is deemed intelligent.

1 comment:

Deb Willbefree said...

Interesting.

My pastor has the same problem.

He is a wonderful man, loves the Lord, cares about his congregation. He just so sincerely wants to do God's will. Those qualities have allowed me to give him a good bit of grace over the years.

You see, he jokes. Inappropriately. Like when someone has given a testimony, he has to make some kind of a wisecrack.

He said one time that he couldn't figure out why not many people are standing and giving their testimony. After service, I clued him in. :}

And when I did, he admitted that inappropriate humor has gotten him into trouble a lot. He needed to watch it. sigh. He didn't.

I've noticed that when things get very serious, too, he makes a joke. He said it was to instill joy and lift spirits. It does neither. Instead, it dismisses pain and quenches deep emotional involvement. Cheap joy at great expense.

Ah, well. You've hit on a pet peeve of mine. Probably because I'm a counselor and have spent decades sitting with people in their pain, honoring their journey thru that valley. It may not bother others quite as much.

haha. Now I feel like telling a joke... I'll spare you. :D

Deb