“Kindness without truth is not kind.
Truth without kindness is not true.”
Sometimes I tell people what they want to hear,
softly glossing over points of contention in order to keep the peace.
This is not being kind.
Sometimes I tell people what they don’t want to hear,
making my points with hard conviction even if it stirs up discord.
This is not being true.
“God wants us to grow up,
to know the whole truth and tell it in love.”
We play Scrabble at our house. Some of us like it, some of us do not. Those who like to play usually talk the others into joining in for the sake of family harmony. It never ends good, though. The wordsmiths among us can’t seem to let up enough to let the others actually have fun and finish the game with a measure of self-esteem.
So imagine my joy yesterday when I found an old Scrabble game at Vinnie’s and inside the box was a paper entitled, “10 Ways to Become an Instant Scrabble Game Expert”. At last, dominance on the Scrabble board! Besides, I’m always a sucker for 10 Ways to Becoming anything, especially if it promises expertise (or a way to prevail over my children in board games).
The first nine tips were strategic ways to “rule the board”, but the 10th one really got my attention. Here’s what it said: “ATTITUDE: Keep in mind that anyone can beat anyone else with a certain amount of luck. Also remember that everyone draws poor combinations of tiles at times, so when you do, take pleasure in making the best play you can. Finally, don’t dwell on your mistakes. Everyone makes them, so go easy on yourself and just enjoy playing!”
Now there’s a philosophy on life for you! Following the “Shampoo Bottle Prayer” idea (July 9th post), let’s pray. Dear Lord, help me to remember that this day is not about winning or coming out ahead or being lucky. I might have a great combination of events and relationships today. Or I may not be able to make any sense out of the things that come my way. Help me to take pleasure in just doing the best I can. Give me the ability to let my past mistakes go and stop beating myself up for them. Help me play this day out with joy. Amen.
“Let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes.” Ephesians 4:23