One of the best pieces of advice I have ever received is this: you never have to explain what you do not say. Proverbs 10:19 says, “When words are many, sin is not absent. But he who holds his tongue is wise.” Proverbs 13:3 says, “Careful words make for a careful life. Careless talk may ruin everything.” I read somewhere that most women speak an average of 25,000-50,000 words a day, and most men speak an average of 12,000-15,000 words a day. That’s a lot of words. I don’t know how they figure that out. I wonder whose job it is to count someone’s words all day. The truth is we do talk a lot. We live in a world filled with words. Some folks, once they start talking, have a hard time stopping. That certainly includes preachers. In our culture we value verbal skills; we equate good verbal skills with intelligence. Sometimes we talk a lot because we are trying to impress people. Sometimes we talk a lot because we are afraid of silence, but the Lord says a truly wise person knows when to speak and when to be silent. That is the advice in Ecclesiastes 3:7, “There is a time for everything, a time to be silent and a time to speak.” Wise is the person who has a good sense of timing.
– Dr. Tim Thompson