“Having a hard time walking?” I’d just tripped–again–and made a rather remarkable recovery.
“No. I’m fine. Just fine.” Snark was oozing out my pores.
“Could be those shoes you wear all the time.” My husband pointed to my soccer flops, my go-to footwear on any given day.
Comfort is a high value for me. Satisfied feet, however, can be their own risk.
The tripping thing. It’s something that’s happened a lot lately. I seem to walk in the comfortable manner these flops engender.
I slop in my flops.
My footwear, it appears, influences my stride.
This isn’t just about what’s on my feet. It morphs into an attitude. Slovenliness is an untidiness of habits.
There was a book years ago that was the attire bible for business people called “Dress For Success”. The idea was your work will reflect how you look. If one chooses to act like a professional, one should dress like one. The perception was people who are untidy aren’t efficient and effective workers.
That doesn’t fly with today’s young entrepreneurs. Relaxed apparel frees you up to focus on the task at hand. A casual dress code has caught on in many companies.
But when I’m dressing for me and not work, all of me needs a casual focus.
If I don’t watch how I walk, I can catch my flops on cracks in the floor and small ridges in the sidewalk.
Tripping is the result of my slopping.
Being too comfortable often keeps me from being aware of what I’m doing. How I’m acting. Not just the walking, but being with friends I’m safe with or circumstances that are so familiar I could walk through them without thinking.
The not thinking thing is when I get into trouble.
I saw this in Mom. As she got older, her filters faded. She didn’t care what she said–if it came from her mouth, it had to be true. Filters meant to remind her of hurtful or inappropriate things just weren’t there anymore. Her age was affecting her brain, an understandable situation.
That’s not my excuse.
I lose my filters when I’m tired, angry, or have a lot on my mind. I trip over my own snark.
And it hurts others.
Jesus reminds me that my words can be used for hope and encouragement or can be hurtful to others. A gift or a curse. I often excuse myself with “It’s been a rough day” or “They said something hurtful to me.”
Words are remembered. Many of the lies that plague my heart today came from words said by someone I loved or respected. I’m now dealing with the blowback of words spoken without thought.
I need to be aware of what I say. Thoughtfully conscious of what I’m trying to communicate. Words of encouragement are gifts of value to the heart. Hurtful words are daggers to the soul.
I may slop in my flops. I don’t want to slop my words.