We’ve had one day in over two weeks when the heat index wasn’t above 100 degrees. Patience and tempers run short. People are testy. My DH had debilitating cluster headaches for three days. Wednesday it was 109, thanks to 98 on the thermometer, and the high dew point. Hubby went to bed at 8:30.
Not five minutes later, the phone rang. A woman asked for someone who doesn’t live in our home. We don’t have cells or caller ID (don’t ask), and we get a lot of unsolicited calls.
I admit I’ve never been a quick thinker (years ago a kid asked if my refrigerator was running and I went to look), so I didn’t even consider asking who she was or the last name of the individual she wanted. I was curt, and basically hung up.
The phone rang again and the same woman asked for the same person.
I said, “No one by that name has ever lived here.”
She verified our phone number, then offered, “You must get a lot of calls to be so irritated.”
“We do. And my husband just lay down with a horrid migraine.” I didn’t apologize. She said, “The Lord be with you.” I was convicted by her click. It sounded so final. It was too late to apologize or search for any more excuses. Humble, regretful, guilty. That old sin nature can still raise its ugly head. My mind raced to the Lord. Five minutes later, the phone rang again, but no one responded to my softer hello. What if it was a test of some kind? What if the caller really meant to call me to see how I’d handled the ruse? What if someone was checking up on me to see if I’m equipped for ministry? What if I missed the opportunity to entertain an angel? I was once voted Miss Congeniality. If those girls could have heard such a tone of voice, that trophy would belong to another. And a short tone like the one I used would never fly in the workforce. Contrition ran so deep I couldn’t sleep. There is no excuse for irritability. A Christian has no reason to be rude. And Christians are meant to be in the Word on a daily basis. Oops. It was our anniversary and we’d planned a day away from home, I hadn’t made the time to absorb God’s precious words. Early this morning, in the wee hours of dark, I turned to Ephesians, Chapter 4. Words are meant to be edifying. I’m reminded to walk (and talk!) in a worthy manner, with humility, gentleness, grace. Forgiveness is a must, because I’ve been forgiven. I’m convinced a kind and loving tone turn curtness into congeniality. Have you been tested lately?

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