It's so easy to open the mouth and stick that big old foot right inside. I didn't mean to be harsh or hurtful or insensitive. But at some uninspiring moment, out pops words I later regret. Sound familiar?
The Bible likens our tongue to a fire. How quickly a fire can devour with a small flame.
Perhaps I'm tense or tired, or at the other spectrum, extremely happy or giddy and not taking a conversation seriously, and I misspeak or jump to conclusions or try to be funny. That's exactly what happened to me in church the other day. I said something in humor to a man, who I found out, takes such conversations very seriously. He expounded to me the Biblical reasons for not doing the thing I'd mentioned in fun. I had to backpedal out of that conversation real fast. Even though I hadn't meant to say anything out of place, I felt I had stuck my foot in my big mouth.
Recently, I saw a quote that went something like this: Sometimes my biggest accomplishment is keeping my mouth shut. Boy, did I snicker when I saw that.
My mind is buzzing with comebacks and funny twists, and often, the humorous response isn't edifying or necessary. Keeping that mouth shut when I want to speak out is truly a challenge.
With a little word, we can start a fire. As unintentional as it might have been, a fire is a fire, and it must be stopped before it causes damage. And so it is with the words we say.
Thinking how quickly I can say something wrong does make me consider others around me. I need to remember to give everyone else a second chance when they misspeak or say something out of turn. I don't know what kind of day or week that person has had, and I need to be quick to forgive and understand, because tomorrow I will surely need their forgiveness and understanding when my tongue rushes to start a fire.
It's a good thing love really does cover a multitude of sins.