It is my turn to receive an award. Yup! A very special award, and even though most of us are earn it one time or another, most are quite reluctant to step forward and accept it. Well, reluctant or not, I accept the award as I think I have excelled at it better than anyone for quantity and quality in conversation with one individual. Do I sound boastful or proud? Well, I’m not, just being truthful. You see, this not so prestigeous award is the least-coveted:
“Open Mouth, Insert Foot Award.”
No need to clap, as the award speaks for itself.
Surely someone else wants to claim it, but too bad cause I’m No. 1! However, I am more than willing to share it.
No, takers….hmmmm…..I must have succeeded in opening my mouth wide enough….
Sorry for the satire, but I thought it quite apt for this post, and sadly true. I tend to earn this award frequently, especially at times where I truly had nothing but the best intentions at heart. We’ve all been there….saying too much, too little, or saying something that came out so totally opposite of what we meant. Amongst friends, this isn’t usually an issue, as they know you well enough that they typically burst out laughing at the “faux pas” (or social mis-step). However, when speaking with someone new, or knows you less, the end result can be disastrous.
In the last few months, I’ve been berating myself over this very thing. I seem to have very little problems with forgiving those who hurt me, but I’ve always been quite hard on myself when the shoe fits on my foot, or in my mouth, as it were.
In conversations/letters with someone who didn’t know me well enough, I used an expression that obviously had a different meaning to both of us, and also didn’t explain myself well enough on other points, came across wrong, and the list goes on. I ended up hurting the other person, realized some of it then yet didn’t know how to fix it, and didn’t even realize the rest of it till a month or so later. I’ve given this person some space, and have been praying and praying for an opportunity to approach them to explain and apologize, but the opportunity just hasn’t been there. It also seems that a simple “I’m sorry” isn’t adequate. However, after my “perfect performance”, I’m almost afraid I will just make things worse.
The thing that bothers me the most about winning the award this time, is that I was trying to reach this individual for Christ. Whether or not I manage to remove the blot off my name isn’t the important part. If a person rejects me, they really haven’t lost anything, but if a person rejects Christ, they lose EVERYTHING!
Truth be told, this is an award I’d rather never win again, but it does have a way of making its rounds. The only way I see to remove some of its stigma is the chance to patch things up with the one who witnessed and endured my greatest performance. I have been getting an occasional smile again, but I’d give just about anything for a chance to set things right. Maybe the solution is as simple as directing the person to this post….maybe, just maybe they would read it.
I think you’ll understand when I say I hope you’re not the next person who wins this award!
If anything, I’m so thankful that there can be no misunderstandings between my Lord and I. He always knows what I really mean, even when the words don’t come out right.
“But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.” Job 23:10
I’m also thankful that He is the God of love, justice and compassion, and of not just second chances.
“This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:21-23