“When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent” (Proverbs 10:19)
We live in a world which is saturated with “news”. There are twenty-four hour news channels which fill our screens with dancing images, and if we are away from the television there are plenty of radio stations competing for out attention. Not satisfied with the daily editions, newspapers have their frequently updated websites where news of government initiatives compete with celebrity gossip. Shall I read about the financial markets and the rise of Gamestop, or find out what new beauty regime Stacey Solomon is using?!
A click away from the news is social media where Twitterers tweet and Facebookers post. Like a perpetual Christmas letter, carefully edited parts of our friends lives are put online and other friends draw their conclusions. The digital chatter is endless.
But are we any happier? Most “news” is in fact comment, specualtion and opinion. Gossip is still gossip, even when dressed up in the sober clothing of the news presenter. It is fear which grabs the attention, and good news simply doesn’t seem to sell.
Today’s Proverb cautions restraint when it comes to speech. Better to step off the roundabout of opinions and go for a walk! In the end, there are times when you simply have to admit that you do not know. There are even times when you have to acknowledge that no-one knows!
To restrain your lips might not be the best policy for the news cycle, but it is a path to sanity. To be slow to speech is to be free of the tyranny of always having an opinion. The danger of many words, is that they can lead to transgression.