Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification that it may impart grace to the hearers. Ephesians 4:29 (NKJV)
My daughter, Chris, said, “You give your cat too many treats. He’s going to get fat.”
The next time Sneaks, my cat, sat on the stool meowing for a treat, I said, “No treats, Sneaks, you’re going to get fat.” and I walked away. Sneaks leaped down from the stool, catapulted off the floor, and body slammed me on my back, then peered at me from under a chair. I learned, “Don’t tell your cat he’s fat.”
When my paintings get critiqued, I don’t like to hear: “Do it over. You need more definition. You could do better.” Hearing comments like, “Your use of different greens works well. Try alternating blues in your sky like you did with green. You can do it. You are doing a good job.” You can put more encouragement in cans than can’ts.
Recently, a sister,Gloria, from church, admired a painting I did. “The colors are brilliant; the detail is precise. Is it for sale?” She bought it. That was the ultimate encouragement.
The Bible often uses animals to describe human behavior. “Go to the ant, you sluggard, consider her ways.” (Prov. 6:6) There are no cat scriptures, only lions. But our Lord used my cat to teach me a lesson.
From now on, I will give Sneaks one treat, with a little scratch behind his ear and say “Good Boy!”
Dear Lord, thank you for being patient with me. Thank you for using my animal to teach me. I pray that all words that proceed out of our mouths will impart grace to the hearers. Amen
© 2012 Lois Gosley