In my quiet time this morning I came across Proverbs 10:19:
When there are many words, transgression is unavoidable,
But he who restrains his lips is wise. (NASB)
If you are like me, there have been countless times in your life you have said something you regretted. Perhaps your words hurt or discouraged someone. Perhaps they weren’t altogether honest. Maybe they stirred up anger.
So often we need to slow down and not spout the first words that come to our mind. As this scripture reminds us, we need to “restrain our lips.” Not always easy, but so important.
Other scriptures come to mind.
Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires. (James 1:19 NLT)
There is more hope for a fool than for someone who speaks without thinking. (Proverbs 29:20 NLT)
When we speak too quickly–and too much–we usually are not considering the other person’s thoughts or opinions. We are so intent on what we think, we fail to listen.
If one gives an answer before he hears, it is his folly and shame. (Proverbs 18:13 ESV)
A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion. (Proverbs 18:2 ESV)
Please join me in striving to speak more slowly, speak less, and listen better.
Let all that you do be done in love. (1 Corinthians 16:14 NASB)