Sometimes I Talk Too Much

I have some opinions. I have some thoughts. I have a plethora of words that beg to be spoken.

And if I’m not careful those words can be too much.

Unchecked words that come too fast bring with them a rush of trouble. That’s why it’s important for me to consider three things with my words…

1. Listening should take precedence over speaking.

Honestly, I think a lot of relationship troubles could be solved if we made the commitment to listen more than we speak. Gosh this is hard, isn’t it? Sometimes when I’m listening to someone all I can focus on is when I’m going to be able to jump in and say what’s screaming in my brain. Later I realize all that focus on my next words prevented me from really listening to what they were trying to say.

What if I made the commitment today to do more listening than speaking? I think I’m going to try this. I’m going to challenge myself to not interrupt. Wait until there is a true pause in the conversation. Truly consider what the other person has said. And then respond with care.

“He who answers before listening – that is his folly and his shame.” Proverbs 18:13 NIV

2. Words should be measured.

I need to engage my brain before I engage my mouth. Just like I consider how a purchase will affect my bank account, I have to consider how words will affect my relationship account. I can do this by thinking about how my words will come across and intentionally asking myself if there are better words that could be used in this situation?
Just like how we consider a purchase will affect a bank account, we must consider how our words and reactions will affect our relationship accounts. www.lysaterkeurst.com

“A fool finds no pleasure in understanding but delights in airing his own opinions.” Proverbs 18:2 NIV

3. Once they are spoken, I can’t unspeak them. (Is that a word? If not, it should be.)

Once words come out of my mouth I can’t gather them back in. It’s like once you squeeze too much toothpaste out, you can’t get it back into the tube. Now certainly, I can quickly say I’m sorry. I can ask for forgiveness. I can attempt to make the wrong right. But I can’t unspeak my words.

“Words kill, words give life; they are either poison or fruit – you choose.” Proverbs 18:21 MSG

There is so much good advice about words throughout the book of Proverbs in the Bible. Today is the 18th of the month so I chose to study Proverbs 18 … and look at all the wisdom tucked just a few verses from that one chapter!

Leave me a comment today with your favorite verse from Proverbs about “words.” And let’s commit together to talk less, listen more, and use our words as gifts.


  1. Barb Shabert says

    For many years, my mother has always told me…”You can never take back what you have already said”. If you can remember this, you will not have to ask forgiveness from people so often. Luckily the Holy Spirit reminds me to edify instead of cutting down my brother’s and sister’s in the Lord.
    My friend and I just started “Made To Crave” this fall. Love it. The DVD is wonderful. I still am struggling with the “Want To” and the why bother syndrome but everytime I open the book, bible and participants guide the Lord minister’s. Thank you Lisa for writing this book and putting together the program. Action Plan is next.
    Love you my dear sister in the Lord.

  2. Carol Gucwa says

    Thank you so much Lysa for all your great books, and your reminder for us to listen more than we speak. I have benefitted greatly from your book Made to Crave. Last year I was in a small group study and we watched your video and read your book. I would like to ask for prayer for a heath situation, that unfortunately has lead me to anxiety and depression. I thought of you as I remember reading about your ear problem a few months ago. Two months ago, I started having crinkling, sometimes buzzing sounds in my right ear with some vertigo, nausea, stomach cramps, and even though I am a believer, I allowed myself to slip into anxiety and depression, as the doctors couldn’t seem to pinpoint the diagnosis and treatment. After having head CT scan, neck xrays and many blood tests I’m still having the symptoms. Latest treatments have been PT and chiro for neck vertebrae being out of place which they think may be causing the ear sounds, pain, pressure and dizziness. I am desperately seeking God’s will as to what it is and what treatment to obtain; considering a special type of chiro called NUCCA which gently adjusts the Atlas at the top of the spine. I have also recently started an antidepessant, Lexapro and Priolosec because of stomach symptoms, and am very concerned about some side effects I am experiencing like constipation and hemmorhoids. Lysa, I hope your ear problems are resolving. I appreciate your prayers and the prayers of your readers, or if anyone has any info about what I am experiencing.
    Thank you and God bless.
    Carol cara4477@att.net

  3. Vicki says

    Proverbs 23:23 He who guards his mouth will keep from calamity. If only I could guard my mouth more. I say things, not necessarily the words are wrong, but the tone and mannerisms are hurtful. I don’t mean to be so ugly. i want to have friends but anytime I open up it seems it comes back to haunt me. I am so looking forward to learning how to stay glued in an unglued world

  4. says

    Amen! Lord help me! I’m really learning this lesson being a minister and teacher. This is certainly a “Jesus Job” for me, I’m learning that just because it’s the truth does not mean I need to say it. I’m asking God to help me listen to His guidance and if He doesn’t give me the assignment to say it, to keep my mouth shut. You’re right, apologies don’t take it back and often leave things tense and uncomfortable. I hate, I have to learn this lesson the hard way but don’t plan to keep on learning it.
    Fools find no pleasure in understanding but delight in airing their own opinions. Proverbs 18:2 NIV

  5. Betty says

    Lysa, thank you for this – it really speaks home to me. I pray that I will listen intently to everyone speaking to me and not worry about what I am going to say, but wait patiently on the Lord and let him speak through me. It is really hard, but it is a lesson I NEED to learn – thank you for speaking directly to me – God Bless you and your ministry

  6. Jenny says

    Just had to laugh at the irony. I decided to print off this devotion about too many words and my printer just kept printing and printing and printing. I asked the printer for the devotion and it gave me much more than I bargained for – just like me :/ Oh, the poor people that are around me in life. They always get so many more word than they wanted to hear!

  7. karen says

    I relate more to your messages than any of the others in Proverbs 31. Todays message is so appropriate for most of us. When it comes to talking….less is more!

  8. Joan Ellingson says

    Hi Lysa, this is the first time I have done this, and am loving seeing what everyone has to say. i have just finished Made To Crave–it was a gift from my friend’s daughter who knew I struggled with weight problems all of my life. Now I want to lose the weight so I can be healthy since I am older–no more panting when walking and hurting knees. I used to want to lose it so I could wear darling clothes. Anyway–your book has worked miracles in my life!!!! I have lost 13 pounds in 5 weeks without even really dieting, I am not hungry at all as I am praying every day and my mom, 96 years old, is my prayer buddy. I love it and thank you for it every day!!!! As you said , there is nothing like it. I am on my Jesus journey and I am free from all of the diet products and programs–just healthy eating. No sugar, potatoes and no breads, but lots of salads (real dressing), fruits and less fats. It is working! Thank you for helping me to get closer to God every day!! I LOVE THIS BOOK!!!! I will keep reading it forever! Joan

  9. says

    Wow Lisa! This is so me! One day I said to my adult son concerning my oh so talkative self “I just can’t help myself ” He turned and said “I know mom, you’re mouth is so full of words!” “YES” I was overjoyed! My mouth is so full of words! It always has been and when I was young I hated myself for it. Really, I hated my chatty self until Jesus showed me how loved I truly am, mouth full of words and all! I laughed as I read your post as I relate and overjoyed as God continues to teach how to use those words wisely through His precious word and ‘sisters’ like you. I just came across you and your site after watching your interview online with Michael Hyatt. I just love you now! Thank you for all of your words, they are reaching me at a time that I just know is a divine set-up. Sincerely-Jamie