THINK Before You Speak

I spent a while yesterday pondering what to post for this week, but nothing good came to mind. Rather than writing some drivel that was not worthwhile, I chose to follow the “THINK” acronym and keep my mouth shut for a bit until I could post something valuable.

Many elementary teachers have a poster that teaches kids to “THINK” about if their words are True, Helpful, Inspiring, Necessary, and Kind before spouting off nonsense. This past week didn’t have any clear, glorious moments to share. I did, however, have encouraging conversations and happy moments shared intentionally with people I love – and who love me.

In the “understanding” lesson of Psalm 119, my students have to go through the text looking for figures of speech to illustrate literally before pausing to interpret them carefully. Years ago, I made a joke about my mortality in relationship to the figure of speech “wineskin in the smoke” which the Psalmist uses to indicate his own shrivelled, temporary existence. This was around the time I learned that I shouldn’t make jokes about my untimely death because apparently students who love me might cry. I started choking on a pretzel after a student got blamed for my joke about me dying – which made the whole situation more hilarious to me, but why I share the story now is not to make light of my death. Rather, I see how loved I am and want to continue to add love to the world by engaging thoughtfully with those around me.

So while this may not be the most helpful or inspiring post today, I want to be intentional about being kind and true as I share how I’m trying to get into a healthy rhythm this semester taking care of my feet and teaching my students well. I take my job seriously, and my health is very important too, so I want to model today the tension I have in making sure my exercises push my progress without developing blisters simultaneous to creating and executing engaging lessons for my students. This week we’ll start “sharing” as we look for what universal truths the biblical authors have left for us to find. I’m still in the middle of a many months long 1 Peter kick, and I love the richness I’m learning from passages that address wives and husbands. How can I still be sure of my identity in Christ and modelling that for others without a husband, and how can I pray for people well without a wife? There’s plenty for me to work with, and hopefully I’ll have a more inspiring thought from it after sharing with my students this week.

Leave a Reply