Book: Proverbs 17
“Even fools are thought wise when they keep silent; with their mouths shut, they seem intelligent.”
Could it be that there is a good reason that God gave us two ears but only one mouth? Could it be that the wise listen twice as much and speak as little as possible?
Whenever we open our mouth and speak we start to leak out the secret of how little we actually know. Although we may be eager to have input into the conversation, usually it is wiser to first listen to those who are more experienced and learn from their comments. A good question to ask ourselves is, “is it more important that my voice be heard or that I hear what wiser people have to say?” Often we act as if it is more important that people hear what we think.
I am learning that I need to be a good listener first and then take more time to listen before speaking. Even though I may have something worthwhile to say, I need to listen to others so that I can speak in a context, tone and language that will be received. If not, my words can be offensive, distracting or even confusing. This leads to rejection of those ideas. Many good ideas have been wasted because of poor presentation.
Sometimes the best thing we can do is keep silence and listen. By listening instead of thinking what we are going to say next, we can learn from others. Could it be that God has ordained a conversation with a person so that we might learn from them. Even a child can teach us much if we are open to God using them for our benefit.
Think about the last few conversations or meetings that you had. Did you do most of the talking or did you spend more time in silence pondering what was being said and what you could learn from the other person?