Givens

Two ears ~ one mouth = the given parts with which to relate. That ought to tell us something. If that isn’t enough warning, the scripture reads: “The prudent keep their knowledge to themselves; but a fool’s heart blurts out folly.” [Proverbs 12:23 NIV]

No doubt I could be graced with more silence, paying close attention to the given anatomy…so as to improve myself. As long as I’m interested in just having something to say, I’m just about to unload much foolishness of heart. The foolish one really isn’t seeking understanding but seeks to voice opinion ~ which he or she greatly values. Proverbs 3:7 NIV reads:  “Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil.” The fool only has interest in his heart revealing itself.

I’m free to make notes in my Bible margins and cover pages. Few quotations make it there, unless they speak deeply to my soul. The latest one, that I revisit very often, is by Admiral Bill Bullard, who lived during the turn of the 20th century: “Opinion is really the lowest form of human knowledge. It requires no accountability, no understanding. The highest form of knowledge is empathy, for it requires us to suspend our egos and live in another’s world.”

I conclude, therefore, that I’m given two ears through which to gain insight into others’ needs, to “suspend my ego,” and to gain empathy. I’m given one mouth through which to express my own opinion ~ being careful that what I say encourages, exhorts, and gives comfort. Two-to-one.

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

 

 

 

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