Sunday, November 16, 2014

True Story - Gloria and Ann



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 Gloria and Ann ( a true story)
Gloria was a Mean Girl and Her Words hurt
 
My first grade teacher asked my reading group to arrange our small chairs in a circle at the back of the room. I sat between Gloria and Ann. Gloria leaned across me and spoke to Ann in a voice loud enough so I could hear.

She said, “Do you like Hazel?” Ann replied, “Yes.”

Gloria laughed and forcefully said, “I don’t like her at all. In fact I hate her.”

I felt like crying! The color in my face drained and so did my spirits! Even though I had been taught not to hit, I was tempted to slap Gloria’s face!

Attitude is a Choice
In my six year old mind, I knew I had a choice. I quickly decided that I would pretend that I had not heard Gloria’s remarks.

Those Sunday School lessons on loving your neighbor had paid off! I would treat her with kindness.

Years later, I realized that Gloria had been teasing and joking. Some families enjoy pranks and playing those ugly games, but it is not a good practice.

Children can be injured by the words they hear and remember. Scars can be left that often cause insecurity and feelings of rejection leading to emotional and even physical illness.

“Dear Gloria, I thank you for allowing me the opportunity to learn to exercise the practice of walking in forgiveness.”

“I HATE YOU!” Yes, I said those words once when I was very upset with my Mother. Mother quickly responded and instructed me that there are some words to which a person should never give a voice. The word hate is one of them. She let me know that the person to whom I had spoken these words would always remember what I had said!  Ouch! Thinking back I still remember the first grade incident.

Mother continued, “No matter how much you beg forgiveness and say you are sorry, they will continue to remember those words you spoke in haste.”

“Yes, Mother, I love you and I believe I have never told a person since that time that I hated them.”

The Bible was Mother’s tool for emphasis. It made an impact on me! Mother explained that the Bible tells us not to stay angry. While it is not a sin to be angry, it is our obligation to make things right with the other person before the sun goes down.

“Ahhhha Thank you dear Mother....”You taught me to forgive even when I did not feel like forgiving! You also taught me to keep certain words unspoken.

So my friend, here is my challenge to you. Are you setting a watch before the words of your mouth? Do practice telling those who are close to you that you love them?

Do you use words to show your love even as you show love by your actions? Take special care to use words of respect that build up and not words that tear down relationships. Words can hurt or words can heal – it is your choice.

And, last of all, are you also acting out the Lord’s Prayer and forgiving those who you think are sinning against you? Just do it! It’s a lot easier to forgive the more often you do it.
 

6 comments:

  1. That's a good reminder about the danger of teasing. I grew up in a family of teasing, and we all knew we were joking and it was fine. But not everyone knows that I am teasing, so I continually have to remind myself to set a guard over my mouth!

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  2. I've had a few "Glorias" in my life, too. And yes, those words hurt more than sticks and stones. Thank the Lord for our precious mamas! My mom also taught me a lot about the power of words, and the value of a kind and gentle spirit. I continue to pray that the Lord will "tame my tongue" - as all too often I don't do a good job of reining my words in!

    GOD BLESS!

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  3. Oh, that had to be so difficult, Hazel! No child likes hearing that someone hates them. Today, I think they would call that "bullying", but back when we were young they didn't have a name for it. Words do have a great effect on people, whether they admit it or not. We need to make every effort to share the love of Christ through loving words, as well as deeds.

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  4. Great story, Hazel, on the power of the tongue and the need for forgiveness! Thanks for hosting & God bless!

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  5. Beautiful reminder. I have always loved that the suggestion Scripture gives us of "putting a watch over our mouths". May we realize every day that we are responsible for the words we speak to others. Grateful for your gentle wisdom which you offer us all, Hazel. Blessings!

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  6. This is so true. Attitude and words can hurt when they come together in hateful combinations. I will strive to remember this simple lesson when dealing with my daughter. Thanks for sharing.

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