It’s so easy to get drawn into arguments with others. Especially over topics we are passionate about. The discussion may start off as civil whether it’s about politics, religion, the way children ought to be raised, cultural issues… you name it.
Have you ever argued with someone and the argument sort of goes from one level to the next when it seems the other person is no longer making sense and is simply just trying to be right? Maybe that person was even you?
I’ve been on both sides of that argument.
Proverbs 26 has much to say about engaging in these arguments.
“Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own eyes.” (5)
“Do you see a man who is wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.” (12)
“Whoever meddles in a quarrel not his own is like one who takes a passing dog by the ears.” (17)
Proverbs 25 advises a different way:
“A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver. Like a gold ring or an ornament of gold is a wise reprover to a listening ear.” (25:12)
Ever been in a situation when someone said the right thing to you at the right time? It may have been something you’ve heard dozens of times, but in that moment, you had ears to hear.
A woman who just listens and doesn’t say much until she has something really good to say is a rare find. I am not one of those. But I’d like to be. Listen, the irony of writing a blog daily (or catching up on a blog you committed to writing daily) is not lost on me. But I would really like to be more considerate of the equity of my words. To wait until the words I share are fit for the moment, for the situation, the conversation, the particular person spoken to.
God, help us use our words wisely today. To not engage in conversations we are not meant to be a part of. Help us to be quick to listen and slow to speak. Give us our words for the day and season them with grace, encouragement and hope. Amen.