Remember this, my dear friends! Everyone must be quick to listen, but slow to speak and slow to become angry. James 1:19 (GNT)
While visiting a doctor recently, a friend of mine was not understanding the important information being given to her about her health condition. After a while, the doctor noticed her perplexed look and asked if she understood what he was saying. After thinking for a moment, she quickly asked if he could repeat what he was saying. He asked her why. She informed him that he spoke much faster than she could think about what he was saying!
The bible has much to say about our tongue and our use of it. The verse in James gives us very good directions for the way in which we should interact in our relationships.
In New England, where we live, a majority of people are flippant and cross to strangers. You just have to wonder if they act that way towards their families? Witnessing this type of behavior is a great prompt to discuss what was seen with our kids. Pointing out how unacceptable it is to treat another human with such disregard is not only a bad witness for Christ, but a horrible habit to have.
Our reaction to things being said to us tells a lot about our heart. So many variables contribute to our mindset on a daily basis: fatigue, hunger, stress, pressure, sadness, bitterness are just a few. How we react may or may not make an impression on a life. My prayer is that when we encounter unfamiliar territory we will be able to quietly listen while silently praying to be mightily used by the Lord for His glory and none of our own.