Yesterday, when Laurel was whining about something, it occurred to me that her God-given strength– her ability to articulate anything and everything– was going unused as long as she was whining and crying. I stopped my short, irritated lecture, and pulled her on my lap.
“Did you know that God gave you a love for words on purpose? He wants you to be a good steward of those words! When you whine and cry, you are not using the words that God has given you.”
I told her that we were going to learn a verse. We repeated it several times.
A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold
In settings of silver. (Proverbs 25:11)
This morning at breakfast we talked about what “a word fitly spoken” actually is. I defined it as the right word, at the right time, in the right way. Then I gave them some examples and had them guess where the breakdown was– saying yes, ma’am in a snotty voice, asking for a drink of water after bedtime, asking five times for the thing that mom said no about, calling someone stupid– they started giving suggestions after awhile.
This was a good, encouraging conversation. I have the feeling that I’ll be discussing these things again.