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Sunday, October 2, 2011

Day 33

Matthew 12:36-37

36 But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. 37 For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”

Our words are powerful.  What we say makes a difference.  Yet, holding our tongue, may be even more significant.  What we don't say may be even more important than what we do.  

Yesterday I went to an older lady's home to help her with some chores. She made me lunch and then began a mostly one sided  Somehow she started talking about politics and espoused some beliefs that I certainly don't agree with.  I just listened.  I wasn't angered nor did I feel a particular desire to engage in any sort of debate.  I was content just listening and hearing her perspective.  After listening for a while I had to excuse myself and be about some other activities.  I received a text from her shortly afterwards apologizing for her political polemic.  Of course I told her "no worries".  It really wasn't a big deal. Yet, it got me thinking.  I have never had anyone apologize to me after sharing their views whether religious, political or otherwise.  Could it have been the lack of response that resonated with her?  Maybe.  But I am becoming convinced about how powerful silence and the peace that often accompanies it can be.

Last night I watched my Clemson Tigers move to 5-0 on the year.  I was so into this game.  I wanted to scream at the refs, but couldn't.  I wanted to complain but couldn't.  Even though I could make some signs of disgust, being upset was unsatisfying.  Celebration however was a different story.  I high fived, ran around, pumped my fists, jumped up and down.  It was gratifying.  Now maybe these reactions were simply a result of the athletic outcome.  Or maybe they speak to something else.  Maybe they speak to nature of silence.  I've never really thought of it as a conduit before but now I'm seeing things differently.  In silence my perspective is framed distinctly.  I think about and process things differently.  Is this worth saying?  Is it worth the effort?  How can I write a thought in a few words that I normally would've expressed with many?

It is fascinating.  I love preaching and teaching now more than I ever have before.  I cherish my designated moments of "exception".

Every word is precious.

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