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Name: Linda

Location: Texas

I am a wife, mom and grandma. I am doing what I've wanted to do all my life. I am a Christian and I love the Lord.

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Tuesday, October 07, 2008
Sighing and Other Subtle Forms of Communication

I have had an on-going battle with my tongue for most of my life. It's been much too witty for its own good. It often seems to have a mind of its own causing me great embarrassment when I have the leisure to mull over exactly what I've said. It got far too much use when my children were growing up. It's a wonder they didn't all go deaf. It also has a tendency to outpace my poor husband's tongue giving it very little chance when push comes to shove.

So....I have been working on it. I've looked up many scripture verses (boy - are there a lot of verses on this particular subject!) and prayed for wisdom and discernment. One of the verses I've been focusing on is James 1:10, "Understanding this my dear brothers and sisters. You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to get angry." I am trying, with God's help, to be more of a listener than a talker.

I feel as though I've made a bit of progress. I really am learning to listen more and talk less. I was feeling a bit proud of myself (a sure sign of trouble up ahead), when the Lord did a little "talking" of His own to my heart. It went something like this:

God - You're doing better with the talking thing Linda, but I've noticed a tendency to sigh heavily when you aren't pleased with the way things are going. And those facial expressions - your face says everything your tongue isn't.

Me - But Father, I've been so much better about the talking. I don't say half the things I'd like to say. And I'm listening and not interrupting much at all. You know how much trouble I've had with that one.

God - Yes child, there has been real growth. However, you are substituting those long, dramatic sighs and raised eyebrows for the words. And the message comes across loud and clear.

Me - Forgive me Father, I know it's true. I sigh loud enough for my husband to ask what's wrong - and if he doesn't ask I at least know he's gotten the message. And the faces - I know I have one of those "easy to read" faces. Hard not to know exactly what I'm thinking.

God - I have found that the most important thing to change is the heart. Let's work on a real heart change and all the rest will follow. Listen to others in a way you'd like to be heard. Respond in the same way. It is My desire that your words, and your outward expressions, edify and glorify.

Me - Change my heart Lord. I really do want to be all that You would have me be.

  posted at 6:39 PM

At 8:49 PM, Blogger grammy said...

Always glad to see your comments on my blog. Sometimes it makes me feel like a kid when I get excited to see if anyone has commented. (I really started out just for me.) Talking about the tongue...made me think...arn't you glad no one says mean things in their comments? When I start talking to my hubbie a mile a minute, he always calmly asks, "You had coffee didn't you?" I always tell him that women have more words to use up in a day than men do. Not to take light what you had to say. I took it all to heart. Thanks.

At 8:51 PM, Blogger Diane@Diane's Place said...

Oh, can I ever relate, Linda. Me too, dear heart...me too.

God Bless you as He works to make you over into His image, my friend.

Love and hugs,


At 9:18 PM, Blogger Tammy said...

I loved this, Linda...it's so true! Both I, and someone I love dearly but will remain nameless, have had trouble with sighing, rolling of the eyes, exasperated looks...

It does come down to a heart matter, doesn't in? Jesus doesn't want us to just refrain from outwardly doing wrong, but having wrong attitudes.

Thank you for this "real" post...we all need this reminder!


At 5:37 AM, Blogger Sandi said...

Wow or should I say OUCH. I feel like I have become a good listener. But I read your blog and it hit me. I make facial expressions or have thoughts while "listening" I guess I need to repent too and make some changes. Thanks for this post.

At 8:57 AM, Blogger annette said...

I can so relate to your post. Several years ago a friend asked me to attend a Bible study w/ her at her church. She was recovering from a situation, everyone knew about it, she needed me as a "buffer", I told her I would attend w/ her. The study was Conversation Peace. I told my husband about it...he said I will buy the workbook and give you gas money. That study really helped me in a big way. Have a blessed week.

At 2:34 PM, Blogger Susanne said...

All I can say is "Ouch!". I can sooo relate.

At 6:57 PM, Blogger Amy said...

oops that sounds JUST like me! *sigh* oops there I go again.

At 7:37 PM, Blogger Susie said...

Hi Linda,
I've been known to let out many sighs rather than words. Thanks for the gentle reminder you've given in this post.
Also many thanks for your prayers for our daughter.
PS I love your profile picture!!

At 1:42 AM, Blogger Linds said...

Umm....yes. That would be me too. In fact, I think you have probably hit the nail on the head for most of us, because bloggers use words well. So I think most of us do in real life out loud too. And the sighs??? Absolutely.
I needed this reminder, Linda. Thank you.

(But maybe I will suspend the "words" bit till I get back from the hospital this morning!)

At 8:25 AM, Blogger Susie said...

We all need the reminder to watch our tongue, and our "sighing". My husband is so good at this, but I'm am still very much a work in progress. Love the conversation.

At 3:30 PM, Blogger Dawn said...

Wow - I was going to say it sounds just like me - but it sounds like there are a lot of us who felt convicted by this one. I think Linds hit the nail on the head!

You're right about all the scriptures about the tongue - especially in James.


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