The Bear is in a wonderful stage of firsts right now. It is funny how I feel the need to document all these firsts. We brushed his three teeth for the first time yesterday (in the bathtub), and I was practically jumping over Mark to try to get a good angle with the camera for a photo.

He will probably be taking his first steps sometime soon. I suppose he was aspiring to be a clothing designer at about six months, because he once said the word, “gingham.”  It seems he has set that dream aside…honestly we’re quite sure it was unintentional but we laughed at claiming that was his first word. The “Dadas” and “Mamas” are in full force right now, but a proper first word is probably coming soon. It is exciting to think about the billions and billions of words someone is going to say in their entire life and actually getting to witness the first one.

First Toofer BrushI was reading in a couple of different places this morning when I was convicted about my own words. I memorized Ephesians 4:29 quite a while ago (and it was part of my reading again today): “Let no corrupt word proceed outof your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.” I try to let that Scripture ‘filter’ what’s going to come out of my mouth. If you stop before the first word, you don’t have to finish what you’ve started!

This morning, though, I wanted to tell Mark the story of a conversation I overheard at the gym, and although it was completely useless nonsense, and really not a very nice story to retell, I went against that ya-know-in-yer-knower-you-should-hush feeling and proceeded to tell the story anyway.

And then as I was reading in Proverbs later, I came across Prov. 11:13 —

A talebearer reveals secrets,
But he who is of a faithful spirit conceals a matter.

Ouch! That’s clear enough, methinks. I asked the Lord to forgive me for going my own way and letting my mouth run with ungraceful talk, and I am thankful for the clean slate and the fresh opportunity to move forward with grace-filled speech instead.

Every word we speak is an opportunity to build up or to tear down — even if it’s just the tone and attitude we are using to deliver the message. Please, Lord, give me a greater measure of Your Holy Spirit — to direct my steps and my words. And help me to obey!