Living

God uses precious people in our lives to teach us wisdom and kindness

I talk a lot. To those of you who hang out in close proximity, that is no surprise. By the very mature age I’ve reached you would think I’d have run out of words, but sometimes it’s like a faucet pouring out stuff just for the sake of pouring out stuff.

So this came up in conversation, “What is the one thing you would like to change about yourself? Be specific. What is one thing (in Christian speak) that needs “sanctifying?”

That, my friends, would be my mouth and what rolls off this ol’ gal’s tongue. I’d like the words to count … to matter … not to be a continuous flow of useless babble. My 2-year-old grandkids don’t seem to mind mindless because they babble at the same rate. Genetics run very strong in the arena of my family’s vocal cords.

Having said (no pun intended) all the above there are words which matter. Things you don’t want left unsaid and those are the one’s I want freely flowing.

My oldest daughter and I were discussing people we would like to say something of value to, like a thank you. We landed on a teacher.

She said there were only a few classes as a child she can remember distinctly. The smell, the layout of the desks and the way the walls beckoned a sixth-grader to enjoy learning. Mrs. King was a teacher, but it wasn’t a job to her. It was a calling.

Like mother, like daughter we found ourselves on the same page when Janet King came to mind. With her there was no blowing smoke, but she came off easy and interesting to understand. As Mel said, “very reassuring in a milestone grade.”

She is an encourager, a perfect gift in a sixth-grade teacher. It always seemed she had a knack for picking up on it when someone needed a little extra cheer. That knack spilled over to the parents and I still remember the time I was the recipient.

It was one of those mornings I was dropping my daughter off at school. Janet was the teacher on car rider duty. I always struggled with the “keeping up with the Joneses” syndrome especially when it came to my children’s clothes. I wanted them to fit in, but spending to keep up with the Joneses just wasn’t in my budget.

Janet, out of the blue said, “I have wanted to tell you how well you dress, Melanie. She always looks so nice.” How did she know? Simple words, but they meant a huge deal to me. Obviously that’s so if I remember them some 30 years later.

That’ll preach. God uses precious people in our lives to teach us wisdom and kindness and that’s why I want to use these lips not only to praise the One who made them, but also to thank those He puts in our path. He put a wonderful teacher and lady in our lives and she certainly taught us the truth of scripture… “the tongue of the wise brings healing.” Proverbs 12:18

Thank you, Janet, for teaching us a lasting lesson in life. Thank you for touching the lives of a momma and her daughter.

Kandi Farris, a freelance correspondent, also is a speaker on matters of faith and values.

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