February 3, 2018

Talk Less, Listen More

Written by Boyd Bailey

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – February 3, 2018

When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise. Proverbs 10:19  

Tempered talk is evidence of wise conversation. It is when our words are many that we run the risk of soliciting sin. Increased words increase the probability of improper speech. For example, respectful conversation does not repeat the same words and phrases in a confined period of time. This impatient cadence frustrates.

Perhaps a look of misunderstanding requires questions for clarification or definition for comprehension. Proud conversationalists can highjack a listener’s understanding with a hoard of words without meaning. If your goal is to communicate, then take the time to listen to the needs of your audience. People who feel cared for and understood have a keener sense of hearing and understanding.

“Even a fool is thought wise if he keeps silent, and discerning if he holds his tongue” (Proverbs 17:28).

Wise people weigh their words before they speak. They allow their minds to catch up with their hearts. Furthermore, in the face of inappropriate behavior, emotions sometimes need to express themselves. Let the other person know if you feel mistreated or misinformed. Concealed anger leads to living a lie (see Proverbs 10:18), but tempered talk is truthful and to the point.

Lastly, you reserve your words out of respect for the other person. If you do all the talking, you are the center of attention. It is condescending conversation when the other individual does not feel important enough to speak up. So honor others by speaking less, listening more intently to how you can love them. Wisdom can be found in the words of each person you meet. Therefore, intentionally talk less and be wise.

“My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry” (James 1:19).



Heavenly Father, hold my tongue to speak less and sensitize my ears to listen with understanding, in Jesus’ name, amen.


Whom do I need to listen to more and talk less?

Related Reading

Job 2:3; Amos 5:13; Titus 1:10; James 3:2 Taken from Seeking Daily the Heart of God v.2

Post/Tweet today

Honor others by speaking less and listening more intently to how you can love them. #temperedtalk #wisdomhunters

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  1. Patty says:

    So timely, I really needed this encouragement, as I wear my heart on my sleeve so to speak. Over the yrs I have learned to filter, still working on “ speaking the truth in love” regardless of situation. Presentation is everything and know your audience.

    1. Gwynne says:

      Dear Patti,
      Thank you for writing to us after reading “Talk Less, Listen More”. We appreciate your sincere admission that you needed to hear this encouragement. Patti, you are not alone. I think that there are many in our Wisdom Hunter’s family (including myself!!) that also need to be reminded of this. It seems, particularly in today’s busy world, that we are not taking the time to be quiet and listen.
      Boyd reminded us in this devotional of ways we can be respectful to others we are engaging with. “So honor others by speaking less, listening more intently to how you can love them.” Amen and Amen. (I,for one, need to hear that one!!)
      And Patti, I love your honesty about “still working on speaking truth in love”. Could you please email me when you have that one figured out? I could use some help in that area,too! 🙂
      Again, thank you for reaching out to us. We are so grateful for you and we look forward to hearing from you again sometime.
      “Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”
      Psalm 23:6

  2. Margaret Belgrave says:

    Thanks for this timely message.. God bless!

    1. Gwynne says:

      Thank you, Margaret, for taking the time to reach out to us. We love hearing from our Wisdom Hunter’s family! I agree with you, this message is so timely in today’s world of busyness and agendas. It is a call to action_to slow down and take the time to truly listen to others and sincerely “soak up their words”. When Boyd stated “Lastly, you reserve your words out of respect for the other person”, I was reminded that it is really and truly out of respect that we choose to listen. Such a powerful reminder!
      Margaret, we are grateful for you and look forward to hearing from you again.
      Believing and trusting~
      “Your steadfast love, O Lord, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds.” Psalm 36:5

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