“The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” ~ Proverbs 12:18
Today I have something to say, but I know I shouldn’t. But I really, really wish I could. I want to blog about it, or post it on Facebook, or tweet it (even though I only have 12 followers, so that would just be silly). It’s something funny that happened to me today – or at least, I think it’s funny.
But it wouldn’t be funny to at least one other person. And since I respect that person, I’m trying my darndest to put a lid on my oh-so-hilarious commentary. So far it seems to be working.
I’m trying to make light of the situation, but the truth is in our world today we have so many ways to communicate that we often forget what’s appropriate to say and what’s not. As a middle school and high school teacher, I witnessed way too many social media disasters, most of which could have been avoided if people had done one thing: used their filter.
Filtering your comments seems as simple as the phrase you learned as a kid: if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all. But somewhere along the way, I think we forgot about that. We morphed into a culture that turned it into: if you can’t say something nice, you’d better say it in a sensational enough way that we can put it on a reality show. And suddenly we’re surrounded by people who are endlessly trying to up the ante on what they can get away with saying.
But we aren’t called to up the ante or always be looking for ways to call attention to ourselves. We are called to think about what we say, and use our words in such a way that they bring healing to people. Be careful with your words – just because the damage they do isn’t visible doesn’t mean it isn’t real.