Monday, January 11, 2010


Words are so very powerful. You can encourage, elevate and enlighten with a single statement. They can also be used in the negative to devastate, discourage and destroy. And sometimes words are used by a lamebrain to set off a mind-boggling sequence of events without any intention or forethought. If you've followed any of my previous escapades, it’s not hard to figure out what category I fall into.

A perfect example would be the day that my dog Chopper ran off with my freshly washed socks. I chased him outside and around the backyard. Chopper thought we were playing a game of tag and (as usual) I was “IT.” The closer I would get the faster the little chimp would run, giggling with his eyes, taunting me in his game of chase. I finally lost my patience after a few dizzying rounds through the patio furniture and yelled out, “DROP IT MONKEYBOY!!!” Unfortunately at the very moment the words left my mouth, in perfect timing like a synchronized swimmer, the trashman was lifting the garbage bag out of my can. I was totally unprepared to deal with the fact that the trashman would think I was yelling at him! We all froze like, monkeys. In my state of shock the only thing I could think to say with a weak little smile was, “I like monkeys??” He was not amused. I couldn't stop to explain myself any further when I had a sock thief to catch.

I wanted to make up for my outburst. I tried to think of a note I could write: “Dear Sir: you are not a monkey. You are more like a bear.” Hmmm, I’m pretty sure that was a compliment but it was just too weird. My second attempt: “Dear Sir: You are doing a great job. I was not yelling at you, I was yelling at my dog.” Nope, I sounded like a crazy lady who yells at sweet little puppies. Instead I decided to try and encourage him the next time he came to my house with a wave, a thumbs up and cheerful chant of “Nice work!” The following week he transferred out of my neighborhood.

After that day I started to think about the consequences of a single statement. Words should not pop out of my mouth randomly like candy from a gumball machine. Psalm 19:14 says “May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in Your sight. Oh Lord, my Strength and My Redeemer." That says a lot. Meditate on things that are positive, healing and encouraging. Then when the words roll out from the overflow of the heart they are words that bring life and love. I’m a bit more cautious with words now, at least as far as how I use them in my neighborhood. Our mailman’s nickname is Rabbit, but you'll never hear me calling him that!


  1. Words carry so much importance and can influence for the good or for the bad. So many times the things I would never plan to say tumble out in awful words. How does that happen and why? I always hate it when I've done that--it's like watching myself in slow motion with no control over what is happening.Sometimes I think it's because I overthink and the thoughts that I try not to communicate steal the stage. Thanks for this reminder. We have so much power with words so why not encourage. P.S. I love Joaquin...Lori Q

  2. I believe God needs to laugh... HARD. Tag, you're it. He and I are laughing, though never at your expense, because you too see the humor... and laugh along.
    For the continued laughter with insightful prose added to let us all know that you can be funny and deep... I'll always return.

  3. LOVED this one. Your writing speaks volumes (no pun intended) and is very wise. I enjoy reading your blog! CL soon...

  4. Love reading your blog. Sure would like to have been there when you screamed monkeyboy. You made me laugh outloud. Hope you are doing good. Sound like you have it under control. Going to be Slickpaw again in July. Check out Love you, Be Blessed. Kuz GB Slickpaw


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