And Now Thou Shalt Shutteth Thy Mouth

Every generation has its challenges. Ours doesn’t know when to shut up.

I could be my generation’s poster girl for this. No one has ever had to encourage me to expand my thoughts on a topic.

Want to be the “voice of our generation?” Good luck trying to be heard. We emerged from the womb expressing opinions and then, invented ways we can continue speaking from beyond the grave.

So the challenge for us is to clam up when clamming up is what it takes.

I never thought I’d say this, but talking doesn’t solve everything.

My father’s generation has taken criticism (and often rightly so) for being unwilling to talk, express their feelings verbally, or engage in constructive dialog.

All that is good, but somewhere along the line, we started to believe that everything could be solved if we just talked long enough, loud enough, and to the right people.


Not so.

There’s a time for everything under the sun. A time to speak and a time to refrain from speaking.


Sometimes when life is hard and a person is in deep distress, talking about it every moment only adds to the weight of it.  Silence can create a sanctuary in a clanging world. Silence can be just the wedge God uses to open stuck doors.

When God led the children of Israel out of Egypt they stood on the banks of the impassable Red Sea and turned around to find Pharaoh’s army gaining on them from behind.

Imagine the sound of thousands of Israelites crying out to Moses, “Have you brought us out into the desert to die?” This was a major freak out moment for God’s people.

Moses then speaks saying, “Everybody get a grip! Pipe down a minute!”

Okay, that’s my paraphrase.

The actual verse in Exodus 14:13-14 reads, “And Moses said to the people, “Fear not, stand firm, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will work for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall never see again. The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to be silent.”

And, because our generation invented amazing special effects, you can readily imagine what happened next as God parted the Red Sea, allowing the impossible – the Israelites cross on foot. The Egyptian army follows suit, the sea closes back around them and the people are saved.

Not by words, but by the power of the Living God.

Sometimes we need to speak up, express ourselves, talk things out. Sometimes words are the answer.

But once in a while, we need to stand firm, close our mouths, stand back, and watch God move – in silence.

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    The Conversation

  1. Gail says:

    So so true. thanks!

  2. Roxanne says:

    Well said, and in relatively few words.

    Shutting up,

  3. Sue says:

    To remain in quiet agreement, I’ll just add ??

  4. Debra says:

    This is the second time this week that God has put the scripture from Exodus 14:14 in front of me. Once again your article is hitting home to teach and help me grow. I’m grateful that you are faithful to your call.