We all have something to say, and we all want to be heard right away. We want to have the next big idea, we all want our opinion to be heard among the masses, and for someone to hear and respond to what we have to say. The world is loud enough as it is, with so many voices clamoring to be heard. No matter how loud we try to make our voice, it seems this world is always louder with the next big topic. Do we continue to raise our voice, raising the volume of the world around us? Or do we stay quiet, letting others speak while keeping our thoughts primarily to ourselves? Where is the line between staying quiet and forcing ourselves into a conversation in order to be heard? I’ve struggled with this concept for most of my life, but I think there may be a balance called being rooted in patient assertiveness.
Being rooted in what I call patient assertiveness means not being in a hurry to speak. Your time to speak will come. Practice patience and allow others to have their time without interruption. You are noticed and your patience will be rewarded by your words being heard. Job’s friend Eliphaz the Temanite had this to say to his friend in Job 4:2, “If one ventures a word with you, will you be impatient? Yet who can keep from speaking?”
I want to encourage you today to consider practicing patient assertiveness in your daily conversations. Take some extra time to listen to someone and don’t be so quick to speak up. Let the words of others wash over your own thoughts before you let any words escape from your mouth. Maybe we can begin to bring the volume of the world down just enough to allow the whisper of God’s still, small voice to resonate in our souls a little deeper. Maybe worldly conversation can be a little less destructive and more constructive.