Silence

Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt                                          Abraham Lincoln

But even so their evidence conflicted. So, the High Priest himself got up and took the center of the floor. “Have you no answer to make?” he asked Jesus. “What about all this evidence against you?” But Jesus remained silent and offered no reply.                                                                                     Mark 14:59-61

The value of silence. I wrote a few weeks ago that when Job had all his troubles, his friends came and just sat with him without saying a word. Job felt their presence and he was comforted, even though they didn’t speak.

Jesus, standing before his wild-eyed accusers who were making up vicious and untrue stories about him, was silent. In so doing, he gained power. They became desperate, angrier- and louder. There is an old saying that some attorneys have- When you have the facts, pound the facts. When you have no facts, pound the table! Somehow, we believe that if we just get louder, we can be heard better. The truth? The softer we speak, and the less we speak, the more people listen.

I am reminded of Jesus being silent before his accusers as we are in Holy Week. We recall again the dignity and character of Jesus as he was falsely accused. He knew who he was, and he knew the truth. That is what mattered to him.

So, as we engage others in disputes or disagreements, the discipline of silence and soft words has high value.

People can often hear our words better when they are unspoken.

Prayer: Lord, give us discernment about how and when to speak, Amen

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