Words are so simple, so small. Yet James tells us that the tongue is like a spark and can start an ever-burning fire. When this fire erupts, there is no turning back. Words can bring so much life or cause so much destruction. Words should be terrifying, yet we throw them around like nothing.
A common question asked in greeting would be, “How are you?” However, when this question is asked, no one really wants an honest answer. Think about it. “How are you?” “Oh, I’m fine.” “Alright, great, I’ll see you later.” That is how this conversation is supposed to go. But what happens when the person on the receiving end of this question is not fine, not okay? Do they lie and say everything is okay? Or do they take the honest route and spill their innermost feelings? The asker expects a positive answer. When a negative response is given, the asker feels obligated to stay and talk, although their original intention was just a quick greeting and a moving on of their life. Words can cause so many problems.
Words, like time, can never be taken back. Once the careless utterances of an unguarded heart leave the dancing lips and the rolling tongue, nothing can be done to catch them again. Though we may try so hard to reach out and pull back the words as they fly through the air, ready to sting and bite and burn those they were thrown at. We can be oh so sorry and use more words to try to bandage the bruised reputations we never truly sought to destroy. And try though we might the wounds words cause may never scar over, never stop hurting.
Words, like time, can never be taken back. Once the heart’s truest confessions escape and are known, one cannot make them forgotten. When the words “I love you” appear in conversation, even by accident, you better mean it. Because she wants so much to be loved, she would give anything to know love. If you are lying and she gives you her heart, her everything, you have destroyed her. Years down the road, she is still finding pieces of the heart that you broke and let blow away in the wind. You took her heart; her trust; her peace. And now she finds it so hard to believe anyone when they say they love her. Words have consequences.
The consequential tolls words take are why there is so much I wish I could say, but never will. If I could say anything, what would I say?
I would tell you, mother how terrified I am of doing anything wrong. I know mother, that I am much more than a disappointment to you. I know that you wanted so much more for me in this world, and I am sorry I can’t give you that. I do not live for this world. Engineer, doctor, English teacher, math professor; all these things I do not desire. Mother, you are broken, I am broken. I want to heal the broken. I know you think I ripped out your heart when I told you I was going into ministry, but this is my life. Can’t you see that? I promise you that if I would have gotten the chance, I could be your little girl. But you abandoned me so long ago, that all I know is how to grow up. Oh to be a child and to tell you my dreams, my losses, my pain and have you tell me I am your princess and that you love me and that everything will be okay, that I can do whatever I want in life and you would be happy. This is all I want mother.
Brother, I would tell you that you killed me when you left me all alone, to fend for myself when the world was up against me, at my back, all around. All I needed was for you to protect me, like I thought you were supposed to do. There was once a time when I would have given anything to be just like you, when I admired everything about you. But I am doing something with my life brother. I usually feel like you wish I had died when you found me, lifeless on the floor. It was you that found me, right? Or is this just one more lie I have believed? I’m sorry for giving up brother, but I am not giving up anymore. I am so much further than gone that I am not turning back and I will prevail. You’re still there, brother, and you hurt me so bad, that all I can do is laugh at the lack of a life you live. God has you brother; just follow His path.
I would tell the boy across the room that he crosses my mind and that I wonder if I cross his. That I would be perfectly okay with sitting across from him at a poorly decorated table, laughing at the world as it crosses in front of us. I would tell him that I am nowhere near ready to love anyone, but I may be ready to step out into a new life, with no fears and new dreams, ready for a new reality. So to be honest, if you asked I would say yes. I would probably say no at first and it would take some careful consideration, but yes would be the eventual answer.
Girls, I would tell you all to just stop. You’re being so stupid. Yes, you’re beautiful, but I thought she was your friend. So why are you competing with her over the heart of the boy? She is quiet and reserved and we all know you’re all the way out there with your intentions declared. She’ll never tell you, but you are hurting her. Just stop it. His heart means his decision. And he will eventually choose neither of you. So quit you’re silly games and just love each other like the sisters you are.
These are the words I will never get the chance to say.