Lip Service

Snake SculptureSpeaking to hear ourselves speak, idle words, blowing smoke, empty and useless words, hot air, false intentions

They think too little who talk too much. John Dryden

Eloquent speech is not from lip to ear, but rather from heart to heart. William Jennings Bryan

Giving lip service is the same as telling a lie, when there is no intention of following though. Randall Burkhalter

   Many of the words we speak are useless and wasteful. We should speak less and act more. There is too much lip service and not nearly enough action. Too much time and effort is wasted by paying lip service to the woes and issues of the day without doing anything to improve them. While much is said, little is done.

    If words could get things done by themselves, the world could become a wonderful place. People could speak and things would get done. It would be magical and god-like. We could speak, create and change things. Wrongs would be righted, the downtrodden uplifted, and evil could be eliminated. Things do not work that way. It takes more than words to get things done. It takes dedication, commitment and action.

     There is always an abundance of good intentions and flowery oratory, but not much more than that. Usually we are not willing to give any more than our lip service. We are not prepared to roll up our sleeves, get our feet wet, work up a sweat or get a little dirty. Lip service is what we are willing to do instead. Words are cheap and easy, we just open up our mouths and out they come. If only good intentions could actually got things done?

     Anyone who is a part of any organization, club or volunteer group; knows what it is to hear complaints, suggestions, even verbal assaults about how things should be done better. There are always plenty of things to complain about, fix, and better ways to do things. When it is time for volunteers to step forward and commit to helping, the words suddenly stop flowing. People are stepping backwards not forward. 

     Saying what you mean and meaning what you say admonishes against careless words. We should craft our words carefully. Once spoken, we should stand by what we say. There is way too much hot air, word pollution and meaningless and empty words. It is increasingly hard to give credence to hardly anything that is written or spoken. Lies, slander, backstabbing, character assassinations are more the rule and less and less the exception.

      We are not responsible for other’s actions. We are totally responsible and accountable for our own. It would be such a good thing to be become better stewards of what we say. We should also speak less and act more.

Challenge: You should hold yourself responsible and accountable for both actions as well as the words you speak or do not speak. It is just as bad not to speak, when speaking is the right thing to do. Decide if you are part of the solution or part of the problem. Be a part of the solution, be prepared to step forward and do something worthwhile. Not only might you make the world a little better, you will become a better person in the process.

Wisdom: I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. Mary Angelou

Spiritual: (NIV)

Truthful lips endure forever, but a lying tongue lasts only a moment. Proverbs 12:19

I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you. Ps 32:8

Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking lies. Psalm 34:13

Words coming from our mouths are the result of what is in our hearts. If we are not motivated by a spirit of love, then our motives and reasons are suspect. This is true about every aspect of our lives. The ways of the world are not motivated or energized by a loving and caring attitude. Selfishness, ambition, pride, envy, jealousy and a long list of worldly traits are abundantly present. God can empower us with a loving heart and a loving attitude.

Prayer: Help me to learn to love and care. Help me to overcome my selfishness.

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