The quiet words of the wise are more to be heeded than the shouts of a ruler of fools.
ReflectionWisdom does not always have to be spoken aloud. It may not be expressed with words. In our desire to be right we can become so passionate and vocal, that we out talk and talk over others to make our point be heard. At some point, a reasonable sound level is surpassed, and we’re yelling and screaming trying to get someone to agree with us. Louder doesn’t mean right.
Remember—the loudest in the room could be hard of hearing or the biggest fool, but not necessarily the one to pay attention to. That person could be you. If that’s you, then get your hearing checked or reconsider allowing God to guide you and speak through you. Or deal with the fact that people will only listen to roughly 20 percent of what you’re saying, and retain less than 5 percent of that.
I tend to raise my voice and yell out of excitement and anger. The longer I speak, the louder I get. And if someone is speaking louder then for some reason, I choose to speak louder instead of at a lower tone. It’s as though I perceive their loudness to mean they’re hard of hearing, so I speak louder so they can hear me.
Before long, the volume level between two or more people is unbearable. Someone has to give. Someone has to intervene and say, “You guys are loud”. Then we all look dazed and amazed, either apologetic or in denial about our role in the shout down. And the conversation resumes at a more acceptable tone and volume level. Thank God for interventions!
I know that people tend to tune their hearing towards lower tones than higher ones. Yet, in the passionate exchange of trying to be heard and trying to be right— let’s be honest with ourselves—I and we, let logic and wisdom fall to the wayside, and the fool emerges. Even if what we’re saying is true, it doesn’t matter if the words are being launched like missiles to someone else.
We have to remember that communication is supposed to be a two-way thing. Perception is everything. It either enhances or destroys. We tend to either tune out those who are speaking loudly, or we choose to engage in a war of words. Either way, the intended message will never be fully heard.
Don’t let the fool in you prevail. Ask God to intervene. He may choose to silence you so that you listen more than you speak. He may choose to silence you so that you speak through your actions. He may guide you through speaking at lower and much reasonable levels. Whichever route taken, it’s 100 percent better than the route the fool in you will choose. I can guarantee that!
PrayerFather, I ask for wisdom through Your guidance and Word. I desire the knowledge of experience, to apply what I’ve learned. May it benefit me and others. I seek to learn from the teachings of mentors and advisors. And from learning from others mistakes, failures and achievements.
I ask that You silence me when words are not necessary, and help me to control my tone when You expect me to speak up and speak out. When I speak, may others hear, see, and feel You. Guide me through wisdom and away from the stage of fools.
In Your name I forever and humbly pray. Amen.