Will Rogers once advised, “When you give a lesson in meanness to a critter or a person, don't be surprised if they learn their lesson.” So, if . . . “If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop diggin'.” Words are usually the tool with which I dig – verbal and written. How do I stop digging? And how do I get out of the hole? So, one sure-fire way way to stop “diggin” that hole is “Stop talking!” And do not fire off an e-mail!
Not answering back is so hard to do! Especially when I know with just a few more words I can show you why you are wrong! Could it be, I would rather win the argument and look like a fool than work through a conflict?
Some men once wanted to win an argument with the hurting friend. Remember Job’s friends? (Job 13:1-12) They couldn’t shut up, so convinced they were of their rightness Job cried out to his friends: “Oh, that you would altogether hold your peace! Then you would evidence your wisdom and you might pass for wise men.” (Job 13:5 AMP)
My friend Flo keeps an index card with this verse written out on the inside of her kitchen cupboard; she frequently opens that door and reads Job’s plea before answering in anger. It’s better to have folks think you are a fool, then to open your mouth and remove all doubt.
“Post this at all the intersections, dear friends: Lead with your ears, follow up with your tongue, and let anger straggle along in the rear. God's righteousness doesn't grow from human anger.” (James 1:19-20 from THE MESSAGE )If I were as quick to listen as I am to speak, I might not have so many regrets about conversations unexpectedly ended. I might better say what I mean, and more truly mean what I say. I might not find myself in so many holes – and I might look a lot smarter.
“Even a fool, when he keeps silent, is considered wise; When he closes his lips, he is counted prudent.”
( Proverbs 17:28)
Thought for the day:
“Just because I am invited, doesn’t mean I have to attend every argument.” (An anonymous quote)