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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Letting go of splinters

By Nancy Shuman

File:Albrecht Dürer - Bildnis eines unbekannten Mannes.jpg
Portrait of a Man by Durer (photo credit:
Wikimedia Commons).

It was one of my grown children who helped me see the error of my ways.  Launching into a story about someone I'll call 'Millie'... relating a tale I'd been told by a friend who'd heard from a co-worker who knew for sure because someone had said ... I was stopped mid-sentence.  "Mom," said my son (kindly), "before you say any more, just know that whatever you tell me will make a difference in what I think about 'Millie' from now on."


Feeling chagrined, I fell silent.  I was stung by the truth of these words.  I could pass along my little bit of gossip, feeling only slightly guilty about doing so, and I would most likely forget it (as it is, I don't remember it now).  But every time my son saw or spoke with 'Millie,' he would carry with him an impression left in the wake of my careless action.  Even though I cannot, today, recall what I was starting to say, I know it was not something positive. 

Oh, I might have tried to be 'nice.'  I probably intended to mention that Millie had a few good qualities, bless her heart.  But was there a good reason to casually mention her actions to my son?  No.  I had no reason to share whatever-it-was.

This happened several years ago, and will I sound dramatic when I say it was life changing?  Probably.  But it was.

Continue reading at Nancy's blog The Breadbox Letters.


  1. Nancy, this is one of those posts that hits you "bang" right in the heart. Immediately, the consequences of our actions roll out before us. A God moment for sure!

    1. Thank you, Mary! My son's words truly opened my eyes and I have never looked at "gossip" in the same way since. Thanks be to God!


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