For months now, my daughter delivers to us each week some fruits and veggies she would not enjoy or use. They are delivered to her in a box and are labeled “misfits”.
Recently I peeled and cut up a mango she had given me. It looked lovely, the sweet aroma filling my kitchen. The first slice was delicious. The second was a shock to my taste buds as it was bitter beyond any expectation. As I proceeded to cautiously taste each slice, I discovered that one half of the mango was sweet and the other side was bitter.
I called her up and laughingly remarked, “Now I know why they are called misfits!”
“Misfit” is defined as something either too large or too small; a person who is not suited or is unable to adjust to a situation” (dictionary.com). But I delved further for more information on this word and discovered another meaning:
“A person whose behavior or attitude sets them apart from others in an uncomfortably conspicuous way.”
(from Oxford Languages)
Now my mind was in full gear.
There is so much debate, argument, and division on any variety of subjects – politics, finances, vaccines, masks, government, restrictions, and church.
Some conversations can get heated, causing offense and at times, a parting of ways.
In the book of James (Chapter 3) , we are told just how powerful our tongues can be:
- it is hard to control
- can set the course of our life on fire
- it is restless
- it is full of poison
It’s not a very complimentary image which has been conveyed, and yet sadly, there are many hurtful tongues around us.
James continues on:
“With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of God;from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way.” (James 3:9-10, NASB)
We cannot be spewing hurtful words and God’s truth at the same time. It will surely be the damaging words which will long be remembered.
Recently in an early morning phone conversation, I was asked my thoughts on a controversial subject. And really, what topic has not become controversial these days?
I was quiet for a few minutes, gathering my thoughts, and my response came together:
I’m not sure if vaccinations are right or wrong. I’m not sure if we would all be best to wear masks or not. But this one thing I know for sure … When one day I stand before the Lord, He will not ask me whether or not I am vaccinated. He won’t be asking me if I am a Republican or a Democrat. He won’t ask me who I voted for. He won’t ask me if I’ve been wearing my mask or not.
However, He may ask me:
Did I love others well?
Did I share Jesus with those who have no hope or Savior?
Did I give a helping hand to those in need?
Did I forgive those who have hurt me?
Was I kind in the midst of unkindness?
Did I pray for those around me?
Eugene Peterson, in writing The Message, said it well:
“It only takes a spark, remember, to set off a forest fire. A careless or wrongly placed word out of your mouth can do that. By our speech we can ruin the world, turn harmony to chaos, throw mud on a reputation, send the whole world up in smoke and go up in smoke with it, smoke right from the pit of hell.”
The morning I cut into the mango, I never expected both a sweet and bitter fruit. Only half the fruit was edible, the other half thrown away.
People are in need of gracious and gentle words. Words that wrap their hurting souls up in comfort and peace. Our words should be welcomed, remembered, and a balm for their wounds.
May this be our prayer each day:
“Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart, Be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my rock and my Redeemer.” (Psalm 19:14, NASB)
We question God’s will at different turning points in our lives. In her post, “A Key To Knowing His Will“, Jennifer Smith encourages us to start with what we already know to be His will for us. Be sure to read her wonderful insights.
Come, sit a spell. Bring your coffee, your posts, and your thoughts. If you link up, kindly visit those who have drawn up a seat around you.