by Calvin and Lisa WulfConsumed by Our Own Lips
"Words from a wise man's mouth are gracious, but a fool is consumed by his own lips" (Eccl. 10:12).
So what do you do?" he asks, hoping to start a conversation.
"Well, I've got my own company….Sales are going through the roof….My kids are really involved in soccer…. Just finished my term as chair our church board….My wife is totally into crafts….Gotta run now."
"Gee, guess he wasn't real interested in knowing me," he says sadly to himself.
We've all been there. Some people talk endlessly without taking a breath. We wait to enter the conversation but find no opening. Walking away we feel ignored, insignificant, and used.
Are we guilty of ignoring others? Whenever we continually talk about ourselves, other people feel left out. Have we lost control of our tongues or are we really just self-absorbed?
God created us for relationships. But constant talking doesn't engage others. Who knows-they may say something that we need to hear. But they never get the chance. True relationships are a two-way street.
Here's a scary thought. If we monopolize conversations with others, we're probably doing it to God too. Some people pray without ever stopping to hear the answer. God wants to build relationships too. But a constant stream of words cuts off the One who has the most to say.
At the end of the day we are left alone, having talked to no one but ourselves. This is the worst kind of loneliness. We close the door to friendship-even friendship with God. Our own lips have consumed us.
If you're doing most of the talking, try these habits to let folks in:
• Commit to listen to others first before you speak.
• Learn how to bounce the "conversation ball" back and forth.
• Listen to God. Don't talk His ear off.
Why leave others gasping to get a word in edgewise? Instead, try putting their interests ahead of your own. Then at the end of the day you'll feel more connected. And you will have heard the voice of God.
© 2001 Calvin R. Wulf and Lisa Aré Wulf, Lighten the Load is distributed by Joshua Faith Ministries-
www.lighten-the-load.org or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.