Does this need to be said?
Does this need to be said by me?
Does this need to be said by me right now?
I'll be honest. I've thrown away words. I've thrown out things that I shouldn't have said, repeated, or even thought. I will not tell you I've always been kind, thoughtful, or nice. But I can tell you that the older I get, the more simple things get. And at the same time, they get more complicated.
I know, right? Confusing.
One of the ginormous lessons that being a special needs family is teaching us is the power and importance of words. How every little one does matter, no matter who hears it. No matter if you say it out loud. And the more I live, the bigger the picture of holding every thought captive to be a true reflection of the gospel... the love of Christ, the love of God for us that He gave Christ.
But there are throwaway words, right? What if I didn't mean it? I just said it. Everybody says it! Get off me! Stop being so sensitive!
This morning there was a post on Facebook by someone I know who recently adopted a beautiful baby boy. Let me add, this boy will likely always have a way darker tan than she does. Someone actually told her that they can use that ugly, hurtful, hate-filled name for people with that skin color because they have a friend of that race.
So I couldn't help but bring up the "R" word, since that's hurtful to us. No, we don't hole up and cry because someone throws it around in conversation, but we notice it. We don't de-friend people because they use it, either. I'm not suggesting that you just drop anyone, or that I'd drop you, as a friend because you use that R word. But what I am saying is that we should check our hearts before we speak.
What is the heart behind what I'm saying? Am I tempted by embarrassed anger to defend what I'm saying simply because I want to... or I can't take it back? Oh, I so long to always check my heart in this manner before I speak. And we (I am always included in these...) should check our hearts and tempers before we make an attempt to improve someone else. That's essentially what we do when we judge. Here, let me get that speck out of your eye. There you go! Isn't that better?
Then we turn around and, in the process, smack them with the plank sticking out of our own eye.
This is why you'll rarely see me slam someone (I hope). I know that for every judgement call I make on someone else, there are at least ten they could make on me. There are times when we are called to take a stand, a nice firm stand, but we have to remember that our wrath... our judgement... our anger... does not produce what we're going for.
So if you use the R word, I'll likely just act like I didn't notice. But if you ever ask if it bothers me to have that word thrown about like "the", I'll tell you that yeah, it does. Even as an outdated diagnosis. The way it bothers me the most is when it's used to hurt others, make fun of others, or as a way to say something is stupid. It bothers me the same way the short bus jokes do. And you want to honestly know why?
That's because the day came when I was loading my little boy into the short bus to go to a special education class.
I didn't see it coming.
I do understand that there are people who honestly have never thought about it. That's why I don't "go off" or just judge people's hearts by the use of one word. No man can judge another man's heart. And so often it's just a lack of realization.
Another good reason to go to blogger.com and start sharing your story.
It can't hurt, and it won't cost you any money... just a little time.
Thanks be to God for growing, learning, guidance, and understanding.