Secrets. - Ecclesiastes 10:20.
April 7, 2023, 8:29 AM

Foolish Words - Secrets

Eccl. 10:20

“Do not revile the king even in your thoughts, or curse the rich in your bedroom, because a bird of the air may carry your words, and a bird on the wing may report what you say.”

One lady was pumping me about information concerning another person. It was not something I should share. Finally, I said, “Can you keep a secret”.

“Oh yes”, she said expectantly.

I responded, “So can I, and this is one of them.”

Foolishly we say things we shouldn’t. It may not be gossip, but it isn’t in the best interests of others to share what should not be shared or repeat what should not be repeated. It is a hard lesson to learn especially when we think others appreciate us more when we tell them secrets. Our words get repeated. It is interesting that when you say something in the privacy of your own room about someone somehow that story gets out and soon is thrown back into your face.

Beware, the writer of Ecclesiastes says, because a little bird may tell everything that you are saying. Presidents and kings, try as they may, they cannot stop leaks of confidential information and conversations. In Washington it becomes a game as to who can leak information to the press first. In fact, sometimes people will purposely whisper things to see what public reaction is before they officially adopt the plan.

Walter Trobish in his book entitled, “I Married You.” Told of a counseling situation he had on the phone with a lady about her boyfriend. She was making derogatory remarks and some of his actions surprised Walter. Trobish made a comment of his own that was unkind about her boyfriend agreeing with her and continued with the session. Moments later he received a phone call from this girl's boyfriend, who was greatly offended over his comment. For he was taping all her phone conversations and everything that was said. He apologized and thought again, every negative remarks about someone are prayers to the devil.

When it comes to words we wish we never said, all of us our guilty. I wish I could take back things I said. I wish I could learn forever the lessons of being quiet instead of speaking up and then there are times when I know I should have spoken up and had remained silent. God has given to us the great experience of communication. Like everything else we can abuse it or use it for God's glory.

A pastor hears many stories. He is put in a position of keeping many secrets of others. It is a hard lesson to know what is public and what is private information. Sometimes, even if it is public, it is best not to say anything. I wish I could get that correct all the time, but I have failed and had to apologize. Another friend helped me by asking a simple question. “It may be true, but is it your story to tell?”

People have been hurt when they have overheard unkind remarks. There is folly in words.

One poet said,

“A careless word may kindle strife. A cruel word may wreck a life;

A bitter word may hate instill, A brutal word may smite and kill.

A gracious word may smooth the way; a joyous word may light the day;

A timely word may lesson stress, a loving word may heal and bless.”

When it comes to folly, Solomon cautions us, Christ command us, be careful what you say. Your words matter to others and to God.