November 4 – Does Aunt Ruth Have a Beard?

“A man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: And a word spoken in due season, how good is it!” KJV Proverbs 15:23

Sometimes I run out of stories to tell on myself. When that happens, I have to borrow one from Lorenzo or one of the kids. In today’s case, my husband will be the victim.

Webster’s dictionary defines the word “uncouth” as “outlandish, awkward in appearance or bearing, boorish, rude, untrained, harsh or blunt, unrefined.” For some reason (ha), this word is one I recall my mom teaching me sometime during my childhood. Whether it was my bluntness or my baby sister’s blurted comments during the children’s sermon, apparently we needed to know the meaning of this word. (I can’t remember anything uncouth my middle sister ever said, so Robin, you’re safe. Forgive me, Em!)

But I digress. My husband is the subject of this devo. . .

My mother-in-law tells the story of Lorenzo being a very forthright little boy and speaking his mind at even the most awkward moments. One of those moments was at church one morning. Apparently, the woman sitting behind them somehow caught his attention. Upon observing her, in the middle of the service, he asked her why she had a mustache.

Well. Oops. Any parent out there has had moments like that. And the training continues, long after the toddler and elementary stage is over. But what about us adults?

The truth is, we can be so right, yet so very wrong. We can feel the need to correct or elaborate to others “how it really is,” whether we’re giving the updated weather report or the correct pronunciation for a word in our conversation. You see what I mean? Those interjected comments may be right, but we can be very much in the wrong in how we come across as a know-it-all or superior.

Everyone we encounter has been created by God. Each human being is worthy of respect and care, just because they exist. Learning our way around other people is a skill that can only be directed by the love of God. Yes, the truth is the truth. But truth must always be balanced by grace. Each of them help the other.

Lord, give me gracious words for my conversations. Let them ring true but be balanced by grace.

If we can keep up with our own adult conversations, being on top of the toddler’s comments will be a piece of cake!

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