Have you ever said something and you knew the moment it left your mouth that you shouldn’t have said it?
“Do you see a man hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool than for him.”-Proverbs 29:20
This applies in two distinct ways.
There are going to be plenty more time in OUR lives from this second forward when we will have the opportunity to practice holding our tongue. Most day bring occasions where we can react and say what we immediately think and feel. The important thing to remember is that most of the things that we might say in emotional reaction, we wouldn’t say once we are settled down. Because we would know that it would be hurtful. Hurtful words are rarely forgotten by either party. The one who is hurt will lose a little bit of trust each time they are hurt by words. The one who says the hurtful words, will deal with the guilt of having said them once they cool down. I remember years ago, I was playing in a championship basketball game in the YMCA league. The game was close and I was being guarded by a guy who I was friendly with. In the heat of the moment as we were jockying for position he said something to me that I didn’t like and I reacted with hurtful words to him. He was merely trying to get under my skin competitively, but I took it to a personal level. My team won the game, but the victory was hollow for me because I knew I had hurt his feelings. I still feel bad about it to this day and that was 15 years ago!
When you speak too hastily with someone who has been speaking with you, it is perceived that you are not listening. Most people don’t think about this because…well…most people have little listening skills. Always allow there to be some space between when someone finishes speaking and when you reply. This allows you time to truly receive what they said, it also makes sure they are actually finished speaking, and it lets the other person know that you were truly listening which makes them feel respected and valued.