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You’re Fired!

It only takes a spark, remember, to set off a forest fire. A careless or wrongly placed word out of your mouth can do that.  James 3:5 MSG

Photo courtesy of pixabay.“What are you doing here? I understand you've been fired.”

My heart skipped a few beats, and my mind raced. What?

About the time I realized a real termination wouldn't have been handled in such a manner, my boss continued. "You’re not, of course, but that was the rumor going around.”

It took a few conversations, but I was able to trace the full story, which was not meant as anything mean-spirited. When a co-worker grew annoyed with an intern’s nosiness during a private conversation he was having with someone else, he said the first thing that popped into his head: I’d been let go the day before. He then recanted, admitting the joke.

His confession fell on deaf ears. On Monday morning, the intern asked other co-workers if they'd heard the news. That set off a firestorm, leading to a check of my Facebook status to see if I had mentioned the incident, a glance into my office looking for signs of a quick exit, and a consultation with my boss. A few moments later, I arrived at work, and my boss entered my office with the above-mentioned pronouncement.

Guarding our tongues is something we all struggle with. The choices are not always as obvious as whether to speak angry words, wallow in prideful boasting, or spread rumors. Sometimes it appears as innocent as a shared prayer request. When done without permission, gossip results. Thank God I wasn't fired ... but the power of the tongue to wreak havoc was clear.

We’ve all uttered words we wish we could take back. Once they’re spoken, the damage is done. It’s then necessary to make amends and seek forgiveness. The tongue has the power to build up or destroy.

Choose words daily that help and heal.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)

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Toni Campbell

God gave Toni Campbell the privilege of marrying her passion with her profession. As the local outreach ministry leader at her church, her days are spent overseeing the food pantry, car ministry, community financial requests, and large-scale outreach events. In the evenings, she writes. Her offerings include devotions, a blog, and an upcoming book on creative church outreach. Toni resides in New Jersey and has two children, a son-in-law, and a precious granddaughter. Catch up with Toni on her website www.tonicampbell.org.