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June 3, 2024
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The heart of the godly thinks carefully before speaking… (Proverbs 15:28)

Words. A lot of words are said every day. A lot of words are heard every day. And on most days more words are said than heard.

We find ourselves in an interesting time in history. But this is not an interesting time because people like to hear themselves talk and think themselves smart. This has always been the case. However, this is a unique time in history because of the unique platforms which we possess to try to make our voices be heard. And in many ways, that’s precisely what we are doing. We are trying to “make” our voices be heard.

Sometimes we think that if I am loud enough or harsh enough then people will listen more or listen more often. But when is the constant escalation of enough ever enough? Singing to the cultural tune (or should I say tone!) only leads us to finding ourselves somewhat disappointed when our words do not have the desired effect on those who hear us or read our social media post.

What if there was another way?

Many times, the things that we are speaking about are not only relevant, but important. There are injustices that we see taking place in our own city. There are issues that seemed to be riding cultural waves that look unstoppable in our country. There are causes that are essential to the flourishing of humanity throughout the world. Yet, the question is how do we go about speaking to and for these issues in a way that is actually heard?

Again, what if there is another way to make our voices be heard without entangling ourselves in the shouting matches of ALL CAPITAL LETTERS through the artificial means of technology? What if there is another way to make our voices heard without escalating our voices and sharpening our tone in what has become normative belittling speech?

Scripture offers us this piece of advice in Proverbs 15:28 stating, “The heart of the godly thinks carefully before speaking.” Or what about Ecclesiastes 9:17 that says, “Better to hear the quiet words of a wise person than the shouts of a foolish king.”

These passages, and others like them, give us an alternative path that is still a possibility in our day. While the chaotic noise of the world swirls frantically around us and it seems that human arguments flow so freely from the lips of people that care not what damage they cause, there is a way to be heard. It does not come from forcing yourself into a conversation. It cannot come from shaming or manipulating people. But the way to be heard is to have our hearts ready by soaking them in the godliness of God so that we may speak winsome words to people who are tired of hearing the shouts of the foolish.

I have a high view of God’s detailed workings in the lives of human beings. I believe that God can bring all of us to a place where the shouting world no longer shines brightly for us. It is in these moments that we are actually ready to hear. It is in these moments where we desire carefully thought out, heartfelt, and godly words. It is also in these moments when we are able to give those same words to the willing and ready. So, my encouragement to you is to not be drawn in to the way the world argues and tries to make their voice heard. Instead seek the anxious-free words of the Lord and then be ready to give them to others in an anxious-free way.

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