TODAY THE WORDS are WHAT IS THERE TO SAY? So many times we find ourselves in an awkward position whether it is at home, work, church, or even at a store. It may be during a casual conversation or a deeply emotional talk and there it happens…..the awkward moment of “what is there to say” or “I don’t know what to say” or the one which is the most awkward feeling, “if I say this, it is going to really make them mad.” I feel almost everyone of us have been in this type of moment and usually more times than we would like. You find yourself with a feeling “I need to respond to this” but what do I say? I speak for myself only, but there are more of you out there who have experienced an occurrence when you see or hear something you cannot agree with or you have a total different belief from the person who is speaking. What do you do? Do you nod your head as if you agree or do you state your honest belief? Do you change the subject? Do you pretend you didn’t hear what they said? Even as I write an uncomfortable feeling is going over me recalling several incidents in which I didn’t know what to do.
Here is an excerpt from Psychology Today on this subject:
9 Ways to Be There for a Friend Without Giving Advice
Does that mean you should say nothing when a friend or relative faces a dilemma?
I don’t think so. While it’s dangerous to give advice, it’s also dangerous, and perhaps unkind, to say nothing or to back away from a friend’s need to talk about a painful situation. Your withdrawal could be interpreted as cold and distancing, or, worse, uncaring. Even if you end up feeling that you haven’t helped much, many friends feel grateful just because you’ve been willing to take the time to help grapple with their issues. That accomplishment will make you both feel better. That’s the upside.
But before you dive in to help, there are at least five more difficult truths to consider.
- An adult has the right to make their own decisions about their life. Ultimately what they do is their choice. (For the purposes of this blog, I’m assuming the person is 25 or over—that is, with complete brain development and in possession of all their faculties—and that there is no risk to anyone’s life or limb involved.)
- The other person has to live with the decisions they make. You don’t.
- You can never really know the totality of another person’s situation. What they tell you may be the tip of their personal iceberg.
- If you have a stake in the outcome of your friend’s action, maybe you can’t be unbiased. Like an honorable judge, recuse yourself from the case.
- You have likely made some bad decisions in your own life. If you remind yourself of this fact, it will keep you humble and avoid a superior, “I know best” stance.
Here is what I have done……all of the above at one time or another and I am still not sure if I did the right action in each case. My belief is we do have to give an unwelcome answer or have an unwelcome conversation at times in our lives. It should be an important reason to engage in these types of conversations and not for selfish reasons and/or stubbornness. I mentioned to someone the other day when I was growing up, my Mother got on my case many times and she hurt my feelings most of those times. She didn’t stop when I grew up and became an adult. She told it like it was, and as much as it hurt or even angered me at the time; wisdom has set in and it has become clearer as the years go by; she was right in those times in her intent. How I perceived it was due to my former state of mind at the time. Oh, I reacted as most of us do and shied away from her, pouting as some of us say, but here is what I know. My Mother loved us and sacrificed for all of her children. She only scolded and taught us the right way to do things because she loved us. Did her “mouth whippings” sting? Oh yes they did. Did they help me? Oh yes they did.
The deeper thought in this message is…..What is there to say? When a conversation has stinging words in them, and if possible, listen to the message and turn off the emotions. If we listen with love and if we talk with love; it will come out in a positive result. It is like a bee sting I received as a child from sticking my nose in every flower bud to smell them; I got stung and it hurt like heck but I learned an important lesson which I never forgot. Something may smell good, but it can contain a sting.. Have a wonderful day.
FEATURED BIBLE VERSE:
1 John 3:18 ESV
Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.
(c) copyright 2012-2019 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission. Third party material is sourced, if known, to original location for credit reference.