A Journal of Joy: Things that make my heart smile…..
Three lady friends and I were out for a night on the town. We were going to dinner and then the symphony. What fun! After dinner we shared an elevator with a middle-aged man. We chatted with him and found out he was headed for the symphony, too. Since we were within walking distance but not sure which way to go we said, “Great! We’ll follow you.”
He good naturedly replied, “That would be like the blind leading the blind.”
There was dead silence, the kind that only lasts a second but seems like a lifetime. You see, my friend Rose is blind. It was apparent by the man’s expression that he wanted the earth to open and swallow him up.
I knew the feeling well because I’ve had my share of verbal faux pas. I long to be the one speaking “apples of gold in a setting of silver” (Proverbs 25:11), but that precious word so fitly spoken seems to elude me. I have blooper-itis. “Kids say the darndest things” but we adults can give them a run for their money.
I’m reminded of a story I heard about a woman who went to the produce section of a grocery store and asked to buy half a head of lettuce. The produce guy seemed perplexed but said he would check with the manager. He went to the back of the store, found the manager, and said, “Some idiot wants to buy a half a head of lettuce.” He turned slowly to find the woman had followed him. He then added, “And this lovely lady here would like to buy the other half. Would that be okay?”
I’m afraid I don’t think that quickly. I consider myself a reasonably intelligent person, but I tend to have these brain-freeze moments.
Once, a neighboring church choir came to sing for our congregation. I thanked a man for coming. He looked at me blankly and said, “But I attend church here with you.”
At a family conference, the speaker encouraged us to meet someone new from each age group every day: a pre-teen, a teen, an adult, and a senior citizen. I went up to the first woman I saw and said, “Perhaps I could meet you and you’d be my senior citizen for today.” She looked offended and replied, “Perhaps you could, but I’m NOT a senior citizen.”
One time I even forgot the name of my best friend when I was introducing her to someone. The list could go on and on.
While these bloopers bring a smile to my face, I still wish I could be more like my friend Rose. She had a certain graciousness that set the other person at ease in an awkward situation.
When the man good naturedly replied, “That would be like the blind leading the blind” and dead silence occurred, Rose didn’t skip a beat. She laughed and graciously said, “Oh, you want me to lead then, huh?” The man sighed and we all laughed.
Now that’s what I call true apples of gold!
Father, how I long to speak apples of gold in settings of silver, but it doesn’t seem to happen very often. Forgive me when I don’t think before I speak and perhaps say a hurtful thing to someone thinking it’s all in fun. Give me the ability to make others feel comfortable in an awkward situation and fill my mouth with Your words of edification.