Updated: Jan 30, 2018
“No one said a word to him, because they saw how great his suffering was.”(Job 2:13) Bible Reading: Job 1:1-22
It was the Greek playwright, Euripides, who said: “Silence is true wisdom’s best reply.”There were times in my own life where I would have done well applying this advice. In confrontational situations, my silence instead of a string of feeble defences, may have won me a friend. During visitations, my pastorally silent listening may have been more helpful than my attempts at words. This is exemplified in Job’s experience. Having just been through a season of tremendous grief, he is now suffering physically. His dear wife, who should have known Job better than anyone else, offers advice as unsound as it could possibly get – “curse God and die!” His three mates, Eliphaz, Bildad and Zophar, however, realise his need for them to just be, rather than do and so they sit on the ground with their friend for a full week and say absolutely nothing. Later on we find that they too succumb to the “I-have-to-say-something-to-help” mind-set and say some unwise things, but for the moment they are silent, and that, for now, was their best reply.
Prayer: Lord, help me to know when to open my mouth, and speak the words you want me to say; but also help to know when silence is better, then set a guard over my mouth, I pray.