Monday, March 9, 2015

the struggle with words

The other night Jason and I were watching a docu-series on emergency services in New Orleans. We've grown absurdly attached to the EMTs who are regularly featured and find ourselves caring about their patients similar to how they do.

As we watched sitting in flannels on the couch under blankets, our favorite pair received a call for a man slashed with a machete. The paramedics were flabbergasted as were we. Upon arriving, the man revealed both arms were cut to the bone, bleeding, fleshy, traumatic. He show how he'd raised his arms in an X over his face to protect himself and the knife had slashed him.

I wanted to cry. I wanted to cry for a man I don't know who'd been slashed by a stranger with a machete in the middle of the night.

Under starry skies, he was hurt, severely, intentionally, with an oversized blade.

Tears were burning my eyes, a lump forming uncomfortably in my throat. I wanted to cry. Maybe Lent just has me sensitive, this lack of distraction breeding an acute and intense awareness of myself and the mess of this world. Maybe it's a mix of sadness for that man and for me. Maybe it's realizing, I have a machete of my own.

My tongue is sharp, so very sharp, easily slicing and shredding without my realization. I know the danger of the tongue and its fruit. I know the way one can eat a poisonous apple and fall into a stupor while those little arsenic-filled seeds poison the soul.

I believe those gifted with a love for words, often struggle with them most.

My words, a gift I believe is truly and graciously bestowed upon me by Him, are my best and my worst. They're my tools to build up and my weapons in combat. They're my strength and my undoing. They're a machete for clearing the densest of emotional jungles, easily turned to vicious weapon on the streets of life.

The tongue is sharp, two-sided, easily slashing and slaying those around us. Our strength being our weakness, our words being our weapon, it seems more often, words stomp around sarcastically, caustically, in cutting motions than dancing in dainty, blessed encouragements.

I believe those gifted with a love for words, often struggle with them most. May we set down our selfish motives and only retrieve intentions well-meant.

8 comments:

  1. I think this is so true! I found out that I loved to write when I was in college, but ever since I was little, my mom would say that I had a "talent" for saying the meanest thing possible. So, like you said, it's a double edged sword. I love words and using them, but sometimes I forget how well I can use them.

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  2. This speaks straight to my soul, Amber. I think it's thoughts like these though that also make me feel like my words shared on my blog just aren't enough sometimes... because I want them to be better, braver - like I want them to be strong and good enough for what He might want me to share vs. what I want to share. (And I wish *every day* could be words typed that speak His thoughts from my heart, clearly) :) Thank you for sharing this!

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  3. I so agree with this. My tongue is my greatest strength as well as my greatest weakness. The Lord has taught me some of the toughest lessons through the words I've spoken. Thank you for sharing this. It spoke straight to my soul.

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  4. I am a snark monster. And that's where I struggle because it can be so terribly mean or vicious even if I'm "just joking". Not becoming even if there's a smile on my face!

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  5. Oh sweet girl I hear you. It's a constant challenge to remind yourself this isn't just a popularity contest or for them or for me. It's for so much more than this and, well, that can be so stressful because from it comes a pressure that is sort of scary.


    You're touching hearts and souls. I know this for surely because I am among those blessed by you!

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  6. I guess that's the way to keep us in check... To make the strength also a weakness.... So then we're not all running around the world thinking we're the best at everything and that we've mastered the task of living. :)

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  7. Thank you for these sweet words! Made my afternoon!! :)

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