Proverbs 31:26

Proverbs 31:26

AMP: She opens her mouth in skillful and godly wisdom, and on her tongue is the law of kindness (giving counsel and instruction).

MSG: When she speaks she has something worthwhile to say, and she always says it kindly.

CEV: Her words are sensible, and her advice is thoughtful.

The Message Version reminds me of a saying I often heard my mother telling us when we were young. “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”

Another thing I noticed is that it says ‘when she speaks,’ indicating that she didn’t always have to be blabbing, letting her opinion be known on every issue.  Nor did she find it necessary to always have the last word.

Some of us have a hard time letting go of an issue when we know that we are right.  We just can’t let the issue go!  What we find happening here is that in our desire to prove that we were right all along, we become wrong — wrong in our attitude, our speech, our thoughts, our motives, and our character.  Is it really so important for us to be proven right that we are willing to sacrifice these other things?  The Proverbs woman didn’t think so.  That’s why the words she spoke were kind, thoughtful, and sensible.  She knew her words were a gift — to be used to give counsel and instruction.  She had learned that there is a time to be silent and a time to speak. (Ecc. 3:7) She knew the wisdom of being quick to hear and slow to speak. (Jas. 1:19) She has made the choice to let her words be a fountain of life. (Pr. 10:11)

Jesus told us that out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.  We can see here that she has taken the time to invest in her spiritual life, keeping the oil in her lamp full, allowing God to help her speak words that will grace the ears of those who hear.

Would you rather be right or righteous?

© 2004, Stacy R. Miller

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