“If I know for sure that something is not the truth, I need to be quiet.
If I have a strong hunch that something is not the truth, I need to be quiet.
If I have even the slightest doubt that something might not be true, I need to be quiet.
But just because something is true does not mean I always need to say it. Motives and manners matter. And so?
If something is true but saying it to someone will needlessly hurt their feelings, I need to be quiet.
If something is true but I know that my reason for saying it is to belittle someone or make them feel guilty, I need to be quiet.
If something is true but I promised to hold it in confidence, I need to be quiet.
If something is true but I know that my reason for saying it is to cause a rift between two people, I need to be quiet.
If something is true but my motive for speaking the truth is to make myself look better by comparison, I need to be quiet.
If something is true and I just feel in my heart that saying it will do nothing but make me feel good, in a sinister sort of way, I need to be quiet.
Bottom line? more often than not, I need to learn to keep it shut. How about you?
I think I have enough duct tape for the both of us.”
[Keep It Shut: What to Say, How to Say It, and When to Say Nothing at All, Karen Ehman]
I compiled some of my favorite verses that remind me to be quiet + my favorite prayer at the end:
Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.
When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent.
Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.
A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.
Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.
But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth. Colossians 3:8
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.
Lastly, my favorite prayer:
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer. – Psalm 14:19
with love, Damaris