Open Mouth, Insert Foot

Think before you speakA couple of years ago, I switched from a bank to a credit union.  I like everything about the credit union, except that they are very slow.  My branch is small and slimly staffed, so a healthy wait is not unusual.

I have learned that the drive-thru definitely takes longer, so I decided to go inside one day, rather than wait in the long line of cars.  As I approached the window and handed the teller my deposit, she said a couple of times, “Hmmm.”  She finally said, “This account has been inactive for over a year.”  I assured her that the account was used weekly. She summoned her supervisor to come take a look, and she agreed it was an inactive account.  This was taking long and I was getting aggravated by “their” incompetence.  In my head, I was already formulating my statements to them.  I would be letting them know that I was tired of the long waits and now this, so I would be withdrawing my money and putting it back in the bank.

But … thank God, I held my tongue!  Thank God I did not open mouth and insert foot! Details would tell another story.

Gaylon and I have two accounts at the institution, one of which is rarely, if ever, used.  I had put that account number on my deposit slip!  I was the problem, not the bank!  On top of that, these women know that I am in full-time ministry.  How awful would it have been for me to cop an attitude, and possibly put a bad taste in their mouths for Christianity!

How often do we want to give an opinion or spout off about situations rather than wait until we have the facts!  How often do we give God bad representation because we are quick to judge without knowing the whole story?  And, who knows, the problem might even be “me.”


My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.”  James 1:19-20 

“A truly wise person uses few words; a person with understanding is even-tempered.”  Proverbs 17:27



Believing My Way Out Of It; Trusting My Way Through It

Trusting GodLong ago I gave up the notion, that to serve God and have “great” faith, means I can pray/believe every negative away from my life. That is just not the case.  Storms will come, some will be hurricane proportion, but if I can’t believe my way out of it, I will trust God all the way through it.   Normally I write my own blogs, and I shall continue to do that.  Today I would like to repost something a friend wrote.  This is from my friend Linda Pearson who lives in Waycross, GA.


(I wrote this for a friend who suffered a devastating loss several weeks ago.  I modified it so I could share it today as a devotion.)

Not praying enough. Not believing enough. Not speaking words of faith enough.

I use to think that if troubles came into my life that I could attribute the troubles to one of the reasons listed above.

At one time (spiritual immaturity) I believed that difficult and painful circumstances were never God’s will for me.  “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”  John 10:10  (DON’T GET ME WRONG…I BELIEVE THIS 100%) But, when I would find myself in the middle of a bad circumstance, I felt I needed to do something to get back in the “abundant” column with God.  I wore myself out trying to perform my way into God’s good grace.  I think back now, and I wonder how I understood and processed all the stories I read in the Bible. You know, stories like Stephen being killed because of his faith.  And, Joseph’s years of wrongful imprisonment.  And, Paul’s beatings and jail time.  And, John the Baptist’s head being chopped off.  And, what about Job?

All those stories clearly defy the theory that God never wants you to face painful and difficult circumstances. 

The reality is this:  I can’t believe my way out of the death of a loved one, or a tree on my house, or a negative checking account, or a flat tire, or a rebellious child, or a mean spouse.  There are many things in life that I simply can’t believe my way out of. HOWEVER, I can TRUST my way THROUGH everything! Bad things happen to God-fearing people. Sometimes, life isn’t fair. And life is much harder than we ever thought it would be. BUT, the GOOD NEWS is — God’s GRACE is sufficient. God’s grace will sustain us and empower us to walk through the most difficult situations in life.

God’s GRACE says, I am good even when your life is anything but.  I am sufficient even in your lack.  I am strong even in your weakness…even when the pain gets worse instead of better…even when the husband leaves…even when you lose everything…even when your child has addictions…even when the car dies.

What a Mess!

stain2Joseph, who is my one-year-old grandson, is quite an eater.  The boy enjoys his food.  While keeping Joseph at my house one day, meal time approached.  As soon as he was seated in the high chair, he started smiling and waving his hands.  Bring it on, Grammy!   The meal of the day was Italian, and he ate it all, and I do mean ALL.  However, in the process, he had sauce on his hands, his arms, his face and his hair. What a sight to see those big blue eyes surrounded by red sauce!   At least I put a bib on him, but Grammy wasn’t thinking – the bib had a white background, and it was covered in red stains.  What a mess!  The bib was ruined and might as well be thrown away.

My husband is the best “stain-getter-outer” in the world!  So, I asked him to see if there was any way to save the bib.  About ten minutes later he presented me with a perfectly clean bib.  It looked like it was brand new.

I’ve had a lot messes that left terrible stains.   After trying many times on my own to remove stains and reverse messes, I’ve turned them over to Gaylon.  I’ve had many garments that I thought were ruined, only to have Gaylon remove the stains.  He has been able to change a lot of messes when all my efforts were futile.

I’ve made a lot of messes in life.  My life has been stained by sin, bad decisions and painful circumstances.  I am thankful to know the GREAT “stain-getter-outer” – Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

“No amount of soap or lye can make you clean. I still see the stain of your guilt. I, the Sovereign Lord, have spoken!” Jeremiah 2:22.   The fact is God saw my guilt, but an even greater fact is that He saw my guilt and gave his life to remove it.   No matter how much I tried to clean myself, it was impossible.   I am so thankful that even though He saw my stain, he also said, “Come now, let’s settle this,” says the LORD. “Though your sins are like scarlet, I will make them as white as snow. Though they are red like crimson, I will make them as white as wool.” Isaiah 1:18.

No matter how stained our lives are, Jesus is the great stain-remover.  He is the life-changer.  He does not throw us away, but makes us new creations.  Our stains can only be removed through the cleansing power of Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world.  It’s not what I can do to get myself clean, but it’s what He has already done!

“Jesus paid it all, All to Him I owe; Sin had left a crimson stain, He washed it white as snow.”