Where words are many, sin is not absent, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent (Proverbs 10:19)
This verse has always alarmed me. Based on these words, when there is a whole lot of talking going on, sin is most likely occurring.
Not a good thing.
Summer is filled with extra air time. The kids are in the pool or backyard and neighbors are gathered for unstructured hours of conversation.
I cannot tell you how much I love a good conversation. There is so much to talk about.
- Any verse in the Bible can be discussed. Any matter of God can be mulled over.
- Anything about my life can be shared. Questions can be asked. Emotions can be released. Friendship can be sought.
- Any matter in the news can be discussed. There is so much going on. What is our culture like? How are we to respond to what is happening in our society?
- Any parenting matter can be brainstormed. How do we get our sweet children through this world successfully?
- Anything can be analyzed, like the use of social media for instance. What are the pros and cons of technology in our lives? Let’s talk!
I also cannot tell you how difficult it is to find good conversation. All too often, talking is either about nothing, or digresses into sin.
I was reading in Proverbs 11 this week and found myself reading these three verses over and over again.
With his mouth the godless man would destroy his neighbor… (v. 9)
Whoever belittles his neighbor lacks sense, but a man of understanding remains silent (v. 12)
Whoever goes about slandering reveals secrets, but he who is trustworthy in spirit keeps a thing covered. (v. 13)
All of us. Still my favorite year.
Sometimes pool time talk, or talk around kitchen tables while the kids play, can literally be destroying the lives of others in the form of gossip, slander and exaggeration.
I think of the television. It feels to me like the industry created cable channels and then asked, “Okay, how do we fill this 24/7 air time now?” And because there are so many time slots to fill, junk was introduced.
It can be like that at the pool. Several hours of air time can tempt us to fill the space with harmful words about other neighbors.
Let’s be careful to not destroy, belittle or slander a neighbor. Instead, let us remain silent on such matters and be found trustworthy.
I know what you’re thinking. No one likes those silent moments. I get it.
Our family has been struggling with having profitable conversations at dinner so I bought a box of Family Dinner Box of Conversations at Learning Express. Even the adults have enjoyed pulling them out during meals.
Call me crazy, but perhaps an item in our pool bag needs to be a box of conversation cards. Perhaps we can go ahead and pull the box out and let the kids draw one while they eat their popsicle. At the very least, we can have a few profitable questions armed and ready before we head out for unstructured conversation time. Instead of chatting about nothing, we can initiate more meaningful conversations like…
- Hey, tell me about where you grew up and stuff. I don’t know that about you!
- Tell me about your job. What does a normal day look like?
- What do you think about (current event).
- What was the first thing you remember learning about God?
The sky is the limit, but having some questions in our minds entering social events this summer may help us build up our neighborhood instead of tear it down.
To the man starring in this blog post, Happy Father’s Day. Thank you for the years of playing and paying (wink). Seven children, one son-in-law, two grandchildren…and room for more if God allows. May God bless each one of our special people every day of their lives, and may God bless you as a father no matter the circumstances. Each of them is a gift, and so are you.
Blog Interaction: Anyone want to share a poolside interaction question?
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