Perhaps one of my favorite songs of all times is “Sounds of Silence” by Simon & Garfunkel. Perhaps because it is deeply thoughtful and trumpets the need to fill the silence with important words. Necessary words.
And perhaps I like it because it assumes that I have the words that are necessary for others to hear. Yet, the song points out that despite our best efforts, words too often miss their mark.
“Fools,” said I, “you do not know
Silence like a cancer grows
Hear my words that I might teach you
Take my arms that I might reach you”
But my words like silent raindrops fell
And echoed in the wells of silence
It seems that the teeming crowds have heard too many words that were ill-conceived and unnecessary. Often words are thrown about simply to fill the silence and people tire of the absence of value. And so, they turn away . . . waiting for a different message or for a different time.
Your words are necessary when
- your words allow others to feel your presence in a time of need
- your words bring hope
- your words shine light and truth
- your words uncover value in what is close by
- your words make the next step sharp and clear
- your words bring closure
Even when your words are necessary, they will occasionally fall on deaf ears.
Necessary words are important words. Deliver them with care. And, for those unnecessary words. Hold them a while longer. Polish them a bit more. If they don’t measure up, consider dropping them in the wells of silence.