"Wisdom Cries Out"

"Wisdom Cries Out"

Be Stingy With Your Words

"The heart of the wise makes his speech judicious and adds persuasiveness to his lips.” (Proverbs 16.23)

Everyone wants to be heard, but people don’t listen just because you have something to say. In fact, it’s hard to listen to someone who just talks. Besides that, the Proverbs warn “a babbling fool will come to ruin” (Proverbs 10.8, 10) and “when words are many, transgression is not lacking” (Proverbs 10.17).

We often say too much in an effort to impose our value. But it’s not how much you say that will influence others. One who has carefully chosen their words is more likely to be heard, and thus have a greater impact (Proverbs 10.19b).

Notice two things from Proverbs 16.23: there is a choice based on a desired outcome. The wise person is deliberate about what comes out of their mouth. They are concerned with how their words influence and impact others. So, they have prepared their hearts with wisdom to speak words that will suit the occasion (Ephesians 4.29). The fool has no such foresight and will suffer the consequences of strife, violence and ruin (see Proverbs 10.8, 10-12).

If you want to be heard, don’t just voice your opinion. Give extra thought to your words. Consider what you want the outcome to be. Allow God’s word to dwell richly in your mind and mouth (Colossians 3.16). Above all, be stingy about what you say— it affects your influence, and it matters to God (Matthew 12.36).

“...let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger...” (James 1.19)