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Sunday, July 12, 2015

When Words Wound

Lately it seems that social media and the internet has amped up the negativity. Comments left on Instagram, blogs, and websites by viewers are just flat out mean.
You may have heard about vlogger Em Ford. She creates makeup tutorial videos on YouTube via the My Pale Skin link.

Despite struggling with acne Miss Ford routinely shows her face without a drop of makeup. I myself find this truly refreshing and inspiring. I am not alone. She has received thousands of messages from viewers all over the world who struggle with self confidence and insecurity. 
At the same time other viewers seem to have forgotten that there is a human being who creates these transformative looks.
She recently made a video that is so worth watching. I hope it will be a game changer. Please be advised that some of the comments left by viewers contain profanity.  

While sticks and stones break bones words can hurt. Words can break a heart.
sticks and stones may break my bones - Google Search

Like many parents I struggle with allowing my kids to text and participate in social media. A simple but effective way to demonstrate the power of words is to hand your child a breakable plate. While wearing safety classes instruct them to drop it. Understandably it will shatter. Then tell your child to say "I'm sorry" to the plate. Ask them if  their apology fixed the plate. 
It is a strong visual lesson.

I'm currently struggling to forgive someone who said something extremely hurtful to me over a month ago. I think the biggest part of my struggle to forgive is that when I told the person they had hurt me they said "I'm sorry" but it was clearly evident that they weren't.

 You can always say sorry.
But the real apology is when you hear the sadness in their voice and see the look in their eyes. 
And you realize that they have hurt themselves just as much...
There's nothing worse than an insincere apology. But forgiveness is something we give ourselves and I will get there. 

Let's remember kindness counts!

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"Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body." ~ Proverbs 16:24


Sandi said...

Wise words. We all need to watch what we say.

And, ugh, so glad the Internet was not around when I was a teenager! SO glad. Now my kids are growing up. I am very reluctant to let them anywhere near it!

Christine said...

Ouch! Words can hurt. And words can heal.
Sending you prayers of healing and a hug.

marty (A Stroll Thru Life) said...

I love the plate idea - It just seems some people are so mean and I don't understand why. How can they enjoy hurting someone else.

The Boston Lady said...

All very well said, Laura. It is impossible to "unsay" something and a true apology must be sincere and heartfelt otherwise it only deepens the hurt. Ann

ellen b. said...

I was just writing a Bread for the Journey for the MGCC blog for next Sunday and the theme is kindness. This is the verse that I fed off of...
Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you. Eph. 4:32
Kindness was the message my brother gave to our son and new daughter in law at their wedding a week ago Saturday.
It is impossible to take back words that are spoken. Great visual...

Michele @ The Nest at Finch Rest said...

About a month ago I was a little hurt for the first time in blogland, too. And you are right - forgiven but not forgotten.

This is a good post on a sunday, and I am so sorry you were prey to insecure nasty stuff.

It takes courage and strength to be kind. My mother taught me that, and she lived it and was a great example of it every day.

I am proud you wrote this post today. Hugs.

Julie's Lifestyle said...

Oh Laura, I'm sorry someone was hurtful and mean to you. It is easy to hide behind a computer and say mean things! I enjoyed this post. Yes the plate idea is great. Take care and hugs, Julie xo

Kelley said...


I am so sorry this happened to you. It stinks.

I particularly appreciated the broken plate analogy. Excellent. I'm going to use that some day. It really tells the facts about our words.

We often are stuck in our own perspectives, only seeing our own {{selfish}} point of view. When we will try to see from the other's perspective, we can see the CONSEQUENCES of our actions and how our words or actions wounded the other person. Putting ourselves in their shoes makes a huge difference, but of course that requires humility... along with understanding and truth.

Language of apology is such a biggy for me. Although my apologies "bleed," I loathe to apologize, Laura. Why, I'm NEVER wrong. Never... I'd rather play the blame game and point all my fingers at the other person, whomever that is. Obviously, this is a huge weakness in my character, and I've had to take a look in the mirror and identify my own faults, acne scars and all, and focus on correcting and changing my self. Honesty, truth, admission, confession-- all these lead to humility. Pride is a killer of these beautiful qualities, and for many, many years, I was so full of my self and my pride. Unfortunately, it took "teaching" about relationships to get me to see my own weaknesses. I'm a very stubborn person!

Over the last decade I have discovered there's a message in my mess. I have made my mess my message and it works because it opens eyes. Each time I confess and admit my faults, I move closer to not only correcting them but doing better-- even WELL-- the next time I'm faced with conflict.

Dealing with someone whose not on my same ladder wrung, yeah, it stings for a while. Even a long time. I push the replay button over and over. Rewind, play. Rewind, play. When they say, "Sorry," and often there's not even an "I'm" in front of it, I want to ask, "You're sorry? For what? What are you sorry for? What did you do wrong? Be specific. Make a list. Why was it wrong to say what you said? SPILL IT! And don't leave out ABC and XYZ. Your apology doesn't bleed enough for me!" Grrrrr...

I highly recommend R. T. Kendall's books "Total Forgiveness" and "The Power of Humility" (which is a book about pride).

I'm so thankful for God's Word. It's going to tell me the truth about myself.

Hugs and happy week to you, Laura, dear.

Elizabeth@ Pine Cones and Acorns said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cindy said...

This is so true. Thanks for the reminder... I might be using that broken plate demonstration with my teens. In addition to their peers, sometimes they need to be reminded their mother has feelings, too!!

Liz Hockamier said...

It's true. It takes a small small person to hide behind the shelter of a computer screen and say something they would never say to the person face to face. For all the good there sure is a lot of evil. I'm sorry you were hurt. ((hugs))
But I loved the post and loved it that you chose to share your experience in a positive way.

Auntie Em said...

Negativity hurts no matter what. People may tell them self they are saying it to help the person improve. Its just another form of bullying. The old saying, 'If you can't say something nice, then say nothing at all' still applies as well but some people can be just as negative by being silent. Thankfully I have only encountered one person who was negative in all my years of blogging. But the nice thing about the internet is that you can delete, block and remind the person to be nice if they are going to play on your little corner of the world wide web!
{{{hugs}}} to you! Put that broken plate in the garbage and enjoy the good ones. :)