Is Silence Golden?

I was just thinking …motivated by my recent blog on over complicating matters, how much I  hate dislike confrontations. I will go to almost any length to avoid one. Many times I just decide to ‘hold my tongue’ (when my brain doesn’t freeze that is) and not say anything at all, if I disagree with  someone and I don’t wish to contradict what they are saying, being that it would accomplish nothing but to alienate them. Some of this goes back of course to earlier years when I wanted people to ‘like’ me and so I would agree with almost anything they said remembering what my mother and others used to say ..’silence is golden’.

Now it’s because I don’t like the feeling that ensues when you openly disagree/argue with another person’s viewpoint. There is always a tension that builds and then sometimes an unnerving silence, waiting to see what further is going to be spoken.  I always question the validity of disagreeing for the sake of disagreeing, and not be open to another person’s viewpoint, thinking mine is the only right one.  After all, even if a person in my opinion is wrong in their thinking it doesn’t follow that they are. It’s sometimes my thoughts versus theirs!

I used to try to make peace in every situation that arose especially within  our family. I would explain one person’s perspective and feelings to the other person and try, mostly in vain to ease the problem. The trouble is, that a third-party getting involved for the most part doesn’t work but I would try so hard. In the process of doing so, I became very unsettled in my spirit when it was something totally out of my control.  We raise our children and when they are small we can make help them realize they both need to say “I’m sorry” and everything is okay once again. It doesn’t work that way when they grow up though as they must ‘fight’ and ‘resolve’ their own battles.

This issue is not just one relating to family of course. It also happens in the ‘blogging’ world. For the most part if I disagree with what someone is saying, I just don’t say anything, but sometimes I feel strongly that I should. Those times are few and far between but they do happen. Therein lies the question.  Do I or don’t I ?  When someone is asking for reactions or opinions then of course if I feel that I have something to offer I will do so.

But I will admit, that I do not like to openly disagree with someone or cause some kind of confrontation. Do you think that’s being wishy-washy or prudent? I do try to question  ” what would Jesus do?” I wonder if others face this same issue.

23 thoughts on “Is Silence Golden?

  1. Thanks Rob, In a particular recent situation it was complicated…In the end I said something not of a harsh nature at all but stating a true fact in my Christian belief but did not enter into any kind of argument because no purpose is then served.

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  2. It all depends on what the issue of disagreement is. For the most part we are to work for peace and not “stir things up”
    But if the issue is bringing shame to the Lord’s name or hurting others we are to begin by kindly approaching the one with whom we have the dispute and try to settle it in a private, kind way. Lord bless Diane.

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  3. i think silence is golden which is why i avoid confrontations as well. Matt. 18-15 says to point out our brother’s fault in private, and 2 Timothy 2:23 says to avoid senseless arguments and questions asked in strife, i do know that not everyone is going to agree with us about God’s Word, but there’s no reason to argue with someone whose heart is hardened, we certainly won’t further the Gospel in that case. Even Jesus Knew When To Walk Away. i think our society just glorifies aggressiveness and belittles meekness and kindness which the Bible honors.

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    • Thank you for pointing out the scriptures and reference that Jesus did in fact know when to walk away…I do stand up for my faith but I maybe do it differently than another might do. We all have our strengths.and hopefully use them well….Diane

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  4. I think we should aim to think through what we might say – not just blurt it out right then. Like you, I’ve always been a peacekeeper until recently and I find I’m speaking out more and more.
    I do think that sometimes Jesus speaks to others through people – and what people say or do. Or that at least, we are part of that person being guided towards accepting some truth. But I err in that I tend to blurt things out. I tend to be too strong in my own opinions without listening to my heart or asking Jesus if it’s right for me to speak at this time and if what I’m saying is right too.
    Also I need to learn when to shut up and go away. Or not torment myself continuing to read someone’s words when I am powerless.
    I have a lot to learn. But that’s what life is for – learning 🙂
    Good luck, Diane. I love your calm, kind way of speaking to people. I think you do listen to your heart, and even more to Jesus, and maybe He hasn’t meant you to confront anyone yet. And when it does come to time for you to confront someone, you will be okay. xxx

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    • I really appreciate what you’re saying Fiona…It takes some time to learn I guess when to be silent and when you have to speak. In your ‘somewhat’ recent situation it was right I think to confront those that were being so ‘cruel”..and then to leave it there. But as you say you then need to not ‘remember’ and take to heart what was said..I hope you’ve been able to do that. ..Diane

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  5. Peace keeping can be tiring and as you rightly pointed out, it can be stressful too. Personally, I voice opinion when I know that my opinion will count otherwise I just keep silent and move on. Not sure if that’s wimpy but I see no point in starting a heated conversation if I have no interest in engaging in one.

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  6. I don’t think you are being wishy-washy. If you are not comfortable saying something then don’t. I am sure that if it were something really important you would let your thoughts be known. Sometimes, when I just stay quiet, the problem works itself out all on its own. However, there are times when people need a little push, and I think Jesus works through all of us to make that push happen with our comments. Regardless whether the words are right or wrong, if it makes a person think or act, then it can’t be bad. 🙂 (As you can tell…I certainly do not know when to shut up! ) LOL! Blessings, Diane. 🙂

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  7. Oh boy Dianne. I too absolutely hate confrontation! It terrifies me! I will go to almost any length to avoid it! I’m not good at sticking up for myself and have a tendency to let people walk all over me . . . Sigh. I think I was just born that way. I’ll bottle things up and then when I’m mad I’ll confront the person. I just hate the whole business. So far I haven’t had any negative comments but if I did I would ignore it! Surprise surprise!!

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  8. that is such a struggle, sometimes the right thing is to speak up and sometimes it’s to be quiet…ugh…i know that my Mother-in-Law and my Hubby are peace keepers as is my mother and sometimes that can cause way more war…or damage…but at times speaking up can too…i guess we just have to decided in the moment often what we think is right and do it…if it’s wrong, we learn…good question! lol

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  9. Thanks for your comment Cindy… When it comes to my faith I do indeed count of the Holy Spirit to help me discern what or how much to say and how to say it and I do as I feel led to do. There are times when it’s about other things and then I must weigh what the issues are and whether or not it’s right to speak opposite viewpoints or to let the matter lie. ….Diane

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  10. Diane I for one am glad that you are talking about this. Yes, we all have blips in conversation with people, but I am convinced that if you have studied and God has confirmed something in particular and you don’t stand up and be counted for believing and agreeing w/whatever it is, then He is hurt and depending on what the subject is, the consequences could be serious. He does punish us for our sin-even in this case where you are trying to not offend. But indeed the Gospel does offend. the Name of Jesus Christ offends and sometimes whatever we say is going to be deliberately misunderstood or repeated erroneously and here we stand, Miss Innocent. Innocent people are killed, hurt and maimed everyday all over the world. Someday it will be here too I am afraid. Certainly if God doesn’t take His church at the beginning of the 7yr Tribulation, there will be many, many martyrs for the faith, because they stood up to be counted.
    I would say you are wise, studied, knowledgeable believer and your spirit knows when something is said that is off-just as mine does. I speak up. YOU MUST ALSO. other, I believe we are offending our precious Lord.

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