What a question! Have you ever been there before? I’m not talking about times when you have something to say but you don’t know how to say it. I’m talking about the times when something needs to be said but you don’t know what to say.
Sometimes the feeling is brought on by unfortunate circumstances people get placed in, sometimes by unfortunate words that have already been spoken and sometimes by unfortunate decisions that are just now coming home to roost.
It seems as if this speechless emotion shares its time between wanting to say something to help but lacking the words to assist, and wanting to say something in response to what someone has done that’s out-of-line but lacking the words to correct.
What do you do in a situation like this? I don’t know the perfect answer. If I knew the perfect answer I wouldn’t have necessarily asked the question – it’s not rhetorical after all. I only have a few suggestions that may help:
1) Remember that few words and even no words spoken isn’t always a bad thing. “In the multitude of words sin is not lacking, but he who restrains his lips is wise.” (Proverbs 10:19)
2) Remember that your presence can paint a picture that’s worth a thousand words. “Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.” (Romans 12:15)
3) Remember you can’t fix it all. “Man who is born of woman is of few days and full of trouble…But his flesh will be in pain over it, and his soul will mourn over it.” (Job 14:1, 22)
4) Remember to rely upon the grace of God. “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.” (1 Corinthians 15:10)
5) Remember that the Lord always gets the last word. “Yet Michael the archangel, in contending with the devil, when he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, “The Lord rebuke you!”” (Jude 9)
How does that sound? Have any other suggestions on what to say when you don’t know what to say?
- Some Alternative Statements When Visiting the Seriously ill – The Fellowship Room