You never know when a little thing you say will make a big impact. Can you think of a little thing someone else has said to you that stuck? The other person probably had no idea.
I can think of two examples; one is something someone said to me, the other was something I said but had no idea it was impacting anyone.
One day a few years ago, Mom & I were grocery shopping (no, we don’t do that very often together!). We ran into an old friend of mine that Mom hadn’t met before, so I went to introduce them to each other. It was at the beginning of the year (New Year health resolution times & all!). I was telling Mom about how G had lost a lot of weight recently & how great that was. We were talking about her daughter & grand-daughter. I flippantly said, “They are both as skinny as rails, doesn’t that make you sick?” G looked right into my eyes & said, “Thank God!” She meant it. “Thank God they don’t have to struggle with weight.” That really struck me. We went on to talk about other things, but that stuck with me.
I do pray Caroline doesn’t have weight issues like I do. Every parent wants better for their children. None of us are perfect & all of us are going to struggle with something in this sinful, fallen world, but as Mom used to say, “Just don’t make the same mistakes as me. Learn from my mistakes. Make different ones!”
I had never thought before G said that to thank God if/when they don’t struggle with weight. And actively pray against that potential stronghold in their lives. I’m really thankful she said ,”Thank God.” Two little words that said a lot. I don’t think she even would remember the meeting hardly, let alone what she said, but she impacted my life with those two words. I also have not since said, “They make me sick” or “It’s not fair”, etc. about a naturally thin person jokingly.
The other example of “little words” was something I said, not knowing the other party was being impacted. I was invited to an Avon type party. Those of you who know me would have to chuckle. I don’t wear makeup! My face regamin consists of Seabreeze every day; same since the seventh grade! Anyway, I went to meet new friends & be nice (support this lady who invited me).
After the facial session, the sales lady took each woman one by one & talked to them alone while the others ate, talked, etc. When it was my turn, she knew I wasn’t going to buy anything, & she knew I was a stay-at-home mom. She asked me what I wanted monetarily that I didn’t have & wouldn’t it be nice to make some money on the side for all those things you do without, yadda-yadda. I just told her there is nothing I do without & that my family definately doesn’t need me to take a job on the side. I want to enjoy these years especially when the children are young – it only happens once in your life. Any side job would take from our family peace, organization, & I am very much needed there. I don’t have tons of “spare time” that I can imagine would be better spent trying to make money. Keith makes plenty for us. I wasn’t at all insulted or insulting, just matter of fact.
She didn’t believe me at first, but finally got the point. I didn’t think any more of it. I never gave that night another thought.
About two years later, that lady came up to me at the library & said she is so glad she ran into me. She had wanted to say thank you for what I had said that night! She said she had never met anyone who was truly content like that & she has been working toward that in her life ever since. She decided to stop selling & didn’t get that second car & her family has been better for it. I was blown away! That night, I was just honestly telling her my thoughts & feelings on the matter & thought she should hear it since she was doing the asking. I wasn’t at all trying to persuade her to do anything about her life. But God used my words to impact her. I never would’ve thought it!
I write all this to say – you never know what words God will use – in your life or in someone else’s. And just in case you might be tempted to get too puffed up, remember God used a donkey to get ahold of Balaam! He uses whatever He wills.