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A Gentle Tongue Brings Healing
By Joel Osteen - Nov 25, 2009
One time I was in the checkout line at the grocery store, and there were about eight or nine people in line in front of me. The lady who was working the cash register was very slow. One item didn't have a price on it, and everyone had to wait. Then she overcharged another person, and the supervisor had to come and correct it. The people in front of me were getting so frustrated. By the time they had gotten to the checkout, most of them were cold and just "matter of fact." Some were even rude to the young lady. She was doing the best that she could. She was just as frustrated that nothing was going her way. While I was standing in that line, I had a decision to make. Am I going to be a part of the problem or part of the solution? Am I going to just dump more frustration and make her life more miserable like everybody else, or am I going to live life as a healer? (And since I am a pastor, and I thought she might know me, I decided to do the latter.)

When it was my turn to checkout, I smiled really big and said, "You know what? I think you are doing a great job. And these people, I know they're kind of rude and impatient, but don't let it bother you. I can tell you are doing your very best." And do you know she started weeping? I thought, "Dear, Lord, what did I do now?" You thought that line was long before, now it's going to be really long!

I asked her, "What's wrong?"

She said, "Joel, my little boy is in the hospital. I am so worried I can't even concentrate on what I'm doing here."

Right there at the cash register in the middle of the grocery store, I asked her if we could pray. We prayed together, and that line just got longer and longer! The supervisor came over, and whenhe saw her crying, he looked at me like, "What have you done to my employee?" She said, "No, no. I haven't felt this much peace in years."

What happened? Proverbs 15:4 says, "A gentle tongue brings healing." It's amazing what happens when you tell someone, "Everything is going to be alright. You're going to make it. There are good days up ahead." Sometimes that's all people need to hear. You don't have to preach a sermon. You don't have to quote 25 scriptures or counsel them for eight hours. Just a few kind words can start the healing process.

Today, you can be someone's miracle. Look for ways to reach out to people in need. Choose to be kind, loving, merciful, and understanding. There are already enough condemning voices. There are already enough critical, fault-finding people. Let's break out of that rut and use gentle words to bring healing to those around us today!
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