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Signposts: Daily Devotions

Written by Renée Miller

Tuesday, August 4

When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but the prudent are restrained in speech.
—Proverbs 10:19

Words are sometimes like a leaky faucet. They just keep dripping out no matter how hard we try to turn them off.  The drips can be irritating and annoying; they often leave behind a residue of rust. 

We simply feel that more needs to be said, more needs to be communicated, more needs to be understood. Or, we worry that if the words that churn in us are not spewed out, our feelings and thoughts will remain forever buried or lost.

Words give hope to our world and our experience. They are the means we use to enter into one another's lives with depth.  They help us make sense of the world hidden within. Sometimes, however, they become the very things that lead us away from heaven and from ourselves. 

When our world is overpopulated with words, we find ourselves no longer truly listening—to God, to others, or to ourselves. When we cease to listen, the very experience and meaning we long to speak about actually eludes us.

We stay on the surface of things and miss the rich texture that lies beneath.  Silence, that counter-intuitive response, gives us time and space to scratch away a surface that may be tawdry or weathered or false, and find, revealed before us, something worthy of awe.

Gracious God, let the beauty that hides in others be the surprise that causes me to gasp in wonder.