I Wish We Had A Mute Button

teal typewriter

My husband used to laugh when I got mad when we first married. He said I looked “cute” when I was mad. Dang his hide, right when I was about to rip his head off with my words, he would start to smile. Then I would stomp once because I would start smiling, and then it was over. Almost seventeen years later, I’m pretty sure he doesn’t think it’s so cute when I’m ticked.

We all have the moments when we are completely ticked. But, when we unleash that anger, we will regret it deeply later.

I remember the sound of my pen on paper, writing feverishly words that would never be read. I felt the weight of them, like a noose around my neck that required action on my part. As much as I wanted this person to change, to see me, and learn words cost you so much more than you can afford, it wasn’t my job to teach this lesson.

I had a soul deficit when it came to this person; they had used up all my niceness.

In a moment of angry tears falling softly, sometimes recklessly, I felt an ache and disappointment like I had never experienced before. I was ticked off and I hate being mad. Words welled up from deep inside me and I let them. In the steady rhythm of my hurt in black ink, the page filled up quickly with my list of wrongs and words that whither instead of bringing life. I let it all spill out and kept writing until I ran out of words.

This was years and years ago. The other day I found the letter that was never hand delivered to the person that hurt me. I opened it for a second and then closed it, immediately. That was years ago and could not hold any weight over me any longer, or them, because I made a choice years ago to let my words fly in the safest space on my knees.

I held nothing back, nothing.

And then I made a choice to never give it because I had dealt with it. I forgave even though no one asked me to.

Only Jesus knows what is on that paper. Note to self: You probably should get rid of that bad boy.

Words spilled and then I waited. I’m not sure how long I was ticked off at this person, it doesn’t really matter, what mattered is that I processed my anger alone. What mattered was I allowed myself to be mad without clawing anyone’s eyes out.

Waiting was my safety net.

I’ve learned how to walk the tightrope of life slowly, I used to be the girl who rushed everything, yet over the years learning to wait has become the long bar that has balanced me.

I’ve have spent countless hours listening to those who have been abused verbally and physically. You know what they always say?

The words are worse than the hitting.

Trust me, the words are much harder to get over.

Bruises fade, but words echo and hang midair. Unfortunately they follow you around until you remove the power behind them, but they can never be unheard.

I really wish people had a mute button.

I wonder if people would wait a little while before posting their opinions on social media, or sending that nasty email, if grace would be that long bar to balance us on the tightrope of trying to relate with others even when we disagree?

My letter will never be something this person has to get over, because I held in my hands and got over it. Fighting and pointing fingers only stirs up the worst in us.

I am married to one of those brutally honest people. During a season in my life where I was stretched too thin and all used up, I tried the brutal approach. Epic fail. Everyone around me within a two-mile radius was crying because of something that I said.

I don’t think we should say what ever pops into our heads; wisdom is holding our tongues sometimes and leaving those reckless words unsaid. Look, there is definitely a time to speak up about things, but if our blood is boiling the chances of our words being spirit-led are pretty low.

“Look also at the ships: although they are so large and are driven by fierce winds, they are turned by a very small rudder wherever the pilot desires. Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things. See how great a forest a little fire kindles!” (James 3: 4-5)

Fierce winds are whipping around us like crazy because of words and we are more divided than ever. What would happen if we waited and prayed first?

I can’t stop what comes out of someone else’s mouth, but I can keep mine shut.

“But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of God.” (James 3: 8-9)

So much love to ya,

Jennifer Renee