Sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me.
– The Christian Recorder, March 1862
People have used this phrase for decades as a defense mechanism letting the world know that they are tougher than any harmful words thrown at them. It convinces others that people’s hateful attitudes will not break their spirit. I bet you are saying it over and over to yourself right now and shaking your head in agreement!
But have you ever been the one throwing the stones? Social media has increased the platform a thousand times over for opportunities to throw stones at others. People hide behind the mask of a computer, a cell phone or a social media app thinking that they have the right to say whatever they want giving no second thought to the consequences of who is on the other side of their own technology screen.
We are on guard with the stone clinched tight in our fist just waiting for someone to disagree with our views on politics, religion or climate change. And then we rare back and throw it.
Hateful words. Judgment. Name calling. And there it goes. A stone straight to the heart that lands deep within the pit of the stomach. Oh we think we feel better because the other person got what they deserved.
But getting what we deserve is not what God had in mind when He sent His Son to die for our stone throwing. God wants us to drop our stones and let Him handle the job of making the situation right – right to bring honor and glory to Him.
It’s hard not to fire back when someone hurts us. But thank goodness God does not give us all what we truly deserve. Thank goodness God is not in the stone throwing business.
I have a challenge for us all. What if just for this month, just for this week or even just for today we decided to drop our stone, not respond but rather trust God to handle each stone throw that comes our way? What if we just slowly released the hold, let our fingers relax and listen for the thump of the drop?
Will you hold it, throw it or drop it? It’s our choice.