Give advice to others only when asked to do so or when it is your duty to do so. This is very important. You don’t go around giving free advice or counsel. If people ask us, we tell them. I was asked, “Father Tom, say some things on Ancient Faith Radio. I say: “Okay, cause you asked me.” So when we’re asked, we can answer. If it’s our duty, if it’s our job—like a parent or a pastor or a supervisor in operation or a teacher—then we must do it. That’s our work. But we never give counsel or advice, unless we’re asked or unless it’s our duty to do so.Fr. Thomas Hopko
“This is very important.” Oh, how I have learned this the hard way. From my own experience, the tendency to give advice without being asked, comes from a sense of profound arrogance. I repent.
Since I am posting these each week I always feel the need to say more about what Father Thomas has said. I don’t know why. It isn’t that I feel I have wiser works to say, because I don’t. Absolutely not.
Oh, and heeding his advice, I ought not to give advice.
I have not advice to offer.
But I scour the internet for quotes on the topic or the scriptures for verses.
He who guards his mouth and tongue keeps his soul from tribulationsProverbs 21:23
The words of wise mouths are gracious, but the lips of a fool shall swallow him up.Ecclesiastes 10:12
And my favorite:
A wise man will keep silent until it is the right time to speak, but an arrogant & undiscerning man will speak out of turn. The man who talks too much will be detested, and the man who stand on his rights will be hated.Wisdom of Sirach 20:7-8
If you have never read the Wisdom of Sirach which is in the Apocryphal books of the Old Testament, you should. It is amazingly rich!
This one made me laugh:
Be quick to listen and give your answer with patience. If you have understanding, answer your neighbor, but if not, let your hand be over your mouth.Wisdom of Sirach 5:11-12
Lord, Jesus Christ, give me discernment to know when to speak and when not to speak. May I learn to put my hand over my mouth when needed.
Have a blessed weeks, my Joys!