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"Saying the Wrong Thing" - - by Rev. Weldon Bares

Have you ever noticed how we sometimes say the wrong thing? I heard about a pastor in Peoria, Illinois who was the minister at a church directly across the street from a funeral home. Because of this location, he was called upon by the funeral director to conduct services for those who had died without any religious affiliation. It was only natural that the pastor would not remember all the families involved.

That was the case one hot August afternoon. He was stopped on a downtown street by a woman who obviously knew him. He could not, however, remember her name or recall under what circumstances they had met. Actually, he had officiated at her late husband's funeral some months before.

The woman generously thanked him for what he had done for her husband. The pastor desperately tried to remember what it might have been, but he simply could not. He didn't know what to say, so he turned the conversation to the subject of her husband and asked, "By the way, how is your husband standing the heat?" Obviously, the wrong thing to say!

On a serious note, we know that words are powerful. We know that what we say, our words, can build someone up or tear someone down. Words are powerful.

It is my prayer today that I will guard carefully the words that I speak. Perhaps that is your prayer also. The prayer of the Psalmist is a beautiful one for all of us: "Let the WORDS of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Thy sight, O Lord, my strength and my redeemer." (Psalm 19:14)

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