Watching our Words

“He does not evil to his neighbor…” Ps. 15: 3


Fall flowers, Dave Reusser

Our Ladies Bible Study had concluded and Helen slipped into the ladies’ room. As we gathered our purses and Bibles, Alexa asked, “Has anyone seen Tom Mitchell’s house recently?” Several of us who knew the man with a slovenly yard shook our heads. Alexa continued, “He’s brought in more old cars, probably to salvage parts from. I swear that man has more trash at his place than a junkyard!”  

            We all laughed and turned to leave–then froze at the look on Helen’s face. She stood outside the bathroom, staring at us. Her face was white and her eyes wide with disbelief. Without a word, Helen snatched up her Bible and purse and hurried out of the church building.

            Helen’s appearance and unexplained departure concerned me and I hurried after her. “Helen, wait!” Her keys were in the ignition by the time I caught up with her. “What’s wrong?”

            “I overheard your remarks,” she burst out.  “Everyone thinks Tom Mitchell is trash, but he is my father and it hurt me to hear all of you talking about him like that!” Tears spilling down her cheeks, Helen drove away. 


God, help me to watch every word that comes out of my mouth, especially judgments made in jest. It is evil and most definitely hurts. Help me to be an instrument of your peace.


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