Please edit-undo what I just said!

[notice] A fortnightly column by Anna Heydenrych[/notice]I spend a lot of time working on a computer. When I make a mistake, I use the edit – undo function. This is a wonderful tool, you probably know it too. Control – Z and your errors disappear before your eyes. Sometimes, I have had the instinct to reach for the edit–undo button when not in front of the computer. There isn’t one of course, no edit-undo button for life.

But wouldn’t it be nice…
You just spilt your cup of coffee on your new white shirt – edit-undo.
You drove into the gate while reversing – edit-undo.
You said something that you shouldn’t have – edit-undo

White shirts can be bleached or replaced, and even garden gates can be repaired – the cost for these mistakes is paid in money. The mistake, however, of saying something that you shouldn’t have, can seldom be made right with money. When we accidently let our tongues have free reign, without exercising caution and wisdom, people can get hurt.

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Gossiping can be an easy mistake to make. Have you ever been tempted to say something about someone else, sensed an instinct not to, and then gone ahead and said it anyway? Have you ever done this and then immediately wished there was an edit – undo button for life? I have.

“The words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to the inmost parts.”
Proverbs 18:8

I have also made the mistake of speaking in haste. Out of irritation or as a result of insult, I am ashamed to admit that my mouth has spewed forth unkind words. And again, when I have spoken such words, I realize that I cannot take them back nor undo the harm that they might cause.

“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

But well-chosen words spoken in love can bring healing and hope. As it is said of the Proverbs 31 Woman, would you not like it said of you?

“She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue.”
Proverbs 31:26

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