My mother always looked for the good in people. Even when others around her (including myself) would say something derogatory about someone else, her response would always be to say something good about them. Even if I were to talk about Satan and how evil he is, she probably would have said, “Well, he certainly is persistent!” Our pastor finds the good in people too, and it’s one of my favorite things about him.
Lately, I’ve heard much negative talk about others from people I know. Sometimes it’s a subtle remark I hear, and other times it’s straight out! The good thing is it has caused me to search myself, to make sure I am not guilty of this sin as well. The Bible says, “Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.” (Pr.27:17) If someone needs rebuking for sin in their life, a brother or sister in Christ should lovingly reveal it to them. But to talk negatively about others when they are present or not present, or make fun of something about them to someone else, is so wrong. God help us to keep a constant watch on our mouth, for out of it flows what is in our heart.
“Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. Put away from thee a froward mouth, and perverse lips put far from thee.”
A lady at our church, “Mrs. Mary”, only talks of the good in others. She’s everyone’s biggest fan. I said something to her one day about how she sees the good in everyone, and her reply was, “Why would I want to do anything else?”
In the movie Bambi, the little rabbit Thumper recites to his mother a saying he had to memorize. “If you can’t say sumthin’ nice, don’t say nuthin’ at all.” I have used this over the years when trying to teach my girls to speak good things about others, having them recite it like Thumper did.
My mother is in Heaven, and there isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t miss her. I wish I could just sit with her again and talk about things, for I know she would encourage me by finding the good in everything and everyone. Lord, may I be more like my mom.
And may we all find the good in others, and share the good with those we talk to.