Billy Graham: ‘Companionable silence’ can be a blessing

08/28/2014 7:00 AM

08/30/2014 6:47 PM

DEAR BILLY GRAHAM: When we got married 40 years ago, it seems like my husband and I talked all the time about everything under the sun. But now we sometimes go for hours without saying much of anything. We still love each other very much, but has something gone wrong? — B.R.

DEAR B.R.: Have you ever heard the phrase “companionable silence”? This may be what you’re experiencing, the quiet delight of just being in each other’s presence, sharing your lives together and even sensing what your spouse is thinking. The Bible says, “There is a time for everything … a time to be silent and a time to speak” (Ecclesiastes 3:1,7).

If this describes your relationship, be grateful for it! All too often, I’ve observed, as couples grow older they sometimes tend to get irritated easily, or they grow grumpy or complaining.

Instead of keeping quiet, they end up arguing, picking at each other or correcting each other. I hope that this won’t ever be the case with you and that you’ll always be on guard against it. The Bible says, “In the multitude of words sin is not lacking, but he who restrains his lips is wise” (Proverbs 10:19).

Don’t misunderstand me; communication is important in any relationship, especially marriage. Your husband needs to know what you’re thinking and feeling, and you need to know the same about him. The Bible says, “The tongue of the wise brings healing” (Proverbs 12:18).

May you take time each day to talk with each other, but most of all, to talk together with God. God loves you and gave you each other as husband and wife, and someday you’ll stand together in his presence if you know Christ. In the meantime, discover the joy of coming together into his presence every day through prayer.

Tribune Media Services 8/29


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