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Thu, Oct. 17

Wisdom is knowing when to keep one's mouth shut

Whoso keepeth his mouth and his tongue keepeth his soul from troubles. (Proverbs 21:23)

When I saw my article in the Kingman Daily Miner of June 8, 2012, about leaving other people's business to other people, I laughed myself silly. My own article was precisely what I needed to read during a full-blown relapse in the area of what I often refer to as "co-dependency from hell."

I hadn't been with my 2,000-mile-away daughter, her husband and children for an entire year, and I was on the last leg of a month-long visit.

Enjoying tremendous success for nearly two-thirds of my stay in their home regarding the biting of my tongue and really keeping my mouth shut, I began to boast only a little mind you and to preen my feathers. Indeed, I had made a splendid effort to refrain from proffering unsolicited advice.

Picture, if you will, a working Mom and Dad, three teenagers (one of whom is a visiting cousin), a two-year-old, and two giant canines (to include a 150-pound blind Mastiff puppy), along with Grandma and Grandpa, cozied under one roof designed to shelter a small family.

This during a whirlwind of continuous activity at the close of the school term: concerts, recitals, school play, and a mélange of high-school graduation events.

"Has the baby been fed?" I would ask, and my question typically elicited an "I don't know." (I'm going to write another article about that one!) No excuse, I know, but you guessed it, I fell down miserably and began to mind everybody's business but my own. The harder I tried to abstain from commenting, about everything, the worse it got until not only my family couldn't stand me, but I couldn't stand being around myself.

I thank God for His Holy Word that lights the way. I thank Him for the people He's placed before me, whether I like it or not, who are quick to reveal my shortcomings; I thank God for the priceless gift of forgiveness, and I thank the Kingman Daily Miner for a needed reminder that I'm just a grain of sand, one among many of us humans who never get to be done.

My husband likes to say, "When I wake up in the morning, I know I'm not done yet." Though I continue to hoe my garden, those weeds like to pop up from behind, and always when least expected.

So, whenever I think I've got my mouth and my pride under control, it might just be time for a tune-up, maybe even an overhaul, remembering Proverbs 16:18 - "Pride goeth before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall."

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