Ambush

By Stan Mitchell
westwagon.jpg“The words of the wicked lie in wait for blood, but the mouth of the upright delivers them” (Proverbs 12:6, ESV).
The desert was still and quiet. The red rock-rimmed mesas stood silent sentinel over the wagon that made its way up and away from the river it had just crossed. Choking dust rose behind it, marking its location for the watching eyes that followed its progress.
Bandits lay flat on the warm rocks above them, watching it as it rocked and creaked along. They fingered their rifles impatiently, waiting for the exact moment when they would attack.
There was a place where the trail narrowed between huge granite boulders, when the unsuspecting family would be most vulnerable. When the wagon reached those rocks, they would strike.
We all know the scene from a dozen Hollywood productions, but have you ever considered the possibility of your words waiting in ambush, seeking the right moment to attack?
Can you imagine your words like gunshots firing on unsuspecting victims, tearing into the fabric and flesh, wounding and killing their victims?
Words have a life of their own. They lie in ambush, waiting to insult a person of color, to break the heart of a child with glasses, to betray a supposedly best friend.
The unsuspecting victim reads the e-mail that questions his integrity, the church leader overhears a wildly inaccurate accusation. The words kick and scream, ricochet and destroy.
Don’t leave your words to “lie in wait for blood.” Tie them down, bury them. Better still, don’t fire them at all!

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