Don’t bother talking sense to fools; they’ll only poke fun at your words. -Proverbs 23:9 MSG
It’s hard for me to not speak up when someone is wrong. There’s a place for it, undoubtedly, but it’s a tender, almost sacred thing. You can’t always assert your way even if you think, or are convinced and convicted, that your way is right.
Dear Convinced & Convicted, flip the roles. Can you imagine someone trying to talk sense to you? It would make you indignant. It would flare up and elevate you on a fiery pillar of pride. Or thereabouts.
What good can come from your mouth when you are breathing in your own righteous smoke? How can you be tender if you’re burning with contempt?
Don’t respond to the stupidity of a fool; you’ll only look foolish yourself. -Proverbs 26:4 MSG
Silently mute the line and slip away. Unfollow, unfriend, or talk about something else. Turn it off or turn the channel. Do whatever you have to do to not get baited into the foolish discussions.
People compile conspiracies and lure the unthinking and the unstudied with fear as their bait. You can’t eat fear. Fear cannot sustain you.
A proverb quoted by fools is limp as a wet noodle. -Proverbs 26:7 MSG
They mix bits of the truth with their sensationalized scenarios. They imply that nothing can be trusted while asserting their trustworthiness. They make you afraid so they can keep you at their feet. Even when they speak the truth, it’s muddied by the rest of the nonsense they use to bait your attention and recalibrate your moral compass.
Loafers say, “It’s dangerous out there! Tigers are prowling the streets!” and then pull the covers back over their heads. -Proverbs 26:13 MSG
It seems like the most dedicated to circulating hearsay are the ones who never check the sources. Their sources use themselves as sources, it all circles back to the gossip ring. It takes too much effort to do the work of making sure they’re not spreading the bad bait, so they repeat the talk of fools and draw their curtains in a little closer.
“Don’t respond to the stupidity of a fool. You’ll only look foolish yourself.”
Your time is too precious to have to sift through that much nonsense. Set yourself up to not have to waste it. Don’t engage. It’s designed to create divisions, so engaging with the foolishness ensures the divisions. Let it pass. Not because it’s hopeless, but because you serve a God who is bigger than the weirdness of this life.