A friend shared a Spanish proverb; don’t speak unless you can improve upon the silence. There isn’t much silence today – unless I turn off the news, and remove myself from the glorious and gabby living room that Facebook is.

When I think back to what others have said to me, their words improved, and still improve the silence. What they said were as watersheds, redirecting and reforming me.

The Episcopal priest who preached on life after life, when I was still young enough to think I had plenty of time ahead of me.

An older woman who comforted me when I was far away from my ailing mom: Christ is with your mother, in that room, right now. He loves her better than you do.

Another friend who told me to quit trying to make a loved one into someone they simply could not be, and be grateful for the friendships I had right now.

A building contractor who told me: Children are on loan from God to be loved, trained, and made ready to meet the Lord, whenever He calls for them.

What is it about words and the power that have?

 Words are power, essentially the power of creation. By my words I both discover and create who I am. By my words I elicit a word from you. Through our converse we create each other. ~ Christian Civility

My friends’ words changed me, not at once, but over the long haul; they still improve the silence. Their words, in time, calmed the cacophony within my brain and heart so I could hear a quiet hope. (Psalm 46:10)

What simple sentences have you heard that improve upon the silence?


Don’t let intemperate words eat away hope and love.

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