Stop and Listen
“A man of knowledge uses words with restraint, and a man of understanding is even-tempered.” — Proverbs 17:27
It happens all the time. You get together with a friend, or someone you haven’t seen in a while, and before you know it, you’ve filled the air with a lot of talk about...you. You realize in embarrassment that you’re rambling on about yourself and have nearly forgotten to include your friend or even God in the conversation. Oh, to be able to use words with restraint.
That’s why I love traveling with my husband or my best friends. We are able to relax and be silent in each other’s presence. No forced conversations. No filling the air with empty words. What a blessing it is to be able to sit with someone you love, smile at each other occasionally, and enjoy the quiet together. Friendships, whether with others or with God, are deepened in silence.
When you stop talking long enough to listen, you learn something — only in silence can what you hear filter from your head into your heart. Only in silence can you hear the heartbeat of God and His still, small voice. In quiet, you realize spiritual insights that reach far beyond words.
If you meet with a friend today, make a concerted effort to talk less and listen more. It may do wonders for your friendship. And this evening when you retire, say less in your prayer time and devote more moments to simply listening to God.
Father, I desire to be a person of knowledge and understanding. That means I must use words with restraint. Forgive me when I fail to even think about what I say to You, and to others, as well. I don’t want to fill my prayers with petitions so much as with wordless worship today. Thank You for what You will teach me in silence.
Taken from Diamonds in the Dust. © 1993 by Joni Eareckson Tada. Used by permission. Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids, Michigan 49530.