Ripples and waves

We probably are all partakers of saying or doing things without thinking about consequences. Most of these little remarks or deeds have little if any consequences. Sometimes after the fact, we think about what we said or did and ask ourselves, why we said or did what we said or did.

Then, of course, there are times when we probably should have said or shared in some little deed and did not. Do we look for ways to help or encourage other people? We might open the door for an older person, a parent with a little child in a stroller or other small children or a physically challenged individual with a wheel chair or walker.

There is an old confession of sins in a prayer book. It asks God for forgiveness for sins of word, thought and deed. It asks for forgiveness for sins of commission and sins of omission. That is really a neat confession. It about covers the field.

If we think about the ripples or waves that we make that come from our words, thoughts or deeds, they can be good or bad. There is an old saying that some of us heard as children. We probably have said to someone that we should look before we leap. Other ways of saying part of this is think before you talk or put the mind in gear before engaging the mouth.

Just in fun we may say or do things to be humorous. We may put our fore-finger vertically over our lips to give the silent signal. It may be good humor or it may not. Most of us want to be accepted and probably accept others. What are the results of our words and actions?

These last two thoughts have been in this column a number of times over the years. I am thinking about the possible consequences before I write them. The first is that we will never be wrong if we try to live a life of loving, serving and encouraging others. The other is to ask ourselves what we think that Jesus would do if He was in my place. Remember the bumper sticker WWJD?

Pebbles do make ripples. Stones, rocks and boulders make waves. All are or have consequences. We make good and bad ripples and waves. God help us make good ripples and waves by loving, serving and encouraging. WWJD.

For the 2010 Club, Feb. 7 takes us to Leviticus 3 and Matthew 24.

Have a great week as you consider thoughts, words and deeds.

Crist Langelett, known to North St. Paul and Maplewood readers as a longtime Review columnist, is a chaplain for the North St. Paul city, police and fire departments, a chaplain at Washington County Jail, a past president of the North St. Paul Area Emergency Food Shelf and one of the founders of North St. Paul's Polar Arena. He is active in his local church and in civic groups.