Invisible Fence

A house near us has a sign in the front yard: “This property is lined with an invisible fence”.  One day, I witnessed the power of the invisible fence.  Bo, our dog, and I were strolling down the street when a big dog came bounding across a yard, heading right for us.  The hair on Bo’s back stood straight up and she positioned herself for battle.  I desperately held on to the leash, trying to avoid a dog fight that Bo was certain to lose.

Then, much to our surprise, the other dog stopped short, let out a yelp and sat down on the edge of the lawn.  We hustled past, both Bo and I, with hearts racing.  I thought, “I need to get myself one of those things.”  But I didn’t have my dog in mind.  I was thinking it might come in handy for me.

Sometimes I wish I had an invisible fence……. for my mouth — some kind of system that would give me a little jolt when I am about to say something insensitive.  I could really use a sharp jab when sarcasm is preparing to spew or when a negative comment is threatening to erupt.  I would gladly accept momentary discomfort if I knew it would keep me from uttering regrettable words.

Such a fence has potential, not just for what comes out of my mouth, but also for what goes in.  For instance, a slight buzz when I’m standing in the kitchen gazing at the almond poundcake might be enough to make me grab a carrot instead.  The Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars might lose their allure if I know a zap is coming with the first bite.

Perhaps the Psalmist was wishing for an invisible fence when he wrote,

“Set a guard over my mouth, O Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips.”  Psalm 141:3

5 thoughts on “Invisible Fence

  1. Totally agree. Sometimes when I think I may be headed for a “loaded” conversation, I ask God to tie my tongue when I am about to say something that cause pain or harm or sabotage the conversation. I think I shall have to memorize Psalm 141:3, but the request to tie my tongue is a good back up plan for me.

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