Rhonda Rhea: How do we get these words to fit?

I’m not sure I ever work as hard as I do when I’m trying to get rid of that extra little quarter-inch of poof from the last corner of a fitted sheet. That last little bitty poof! It’s called a “fitted” sheet, but seriously, how do you get this thing to actually fit? I’ve found myself checking the queen tag more than once to make sure it’s not a twin.

The corners on big beds that are tight against a wall are the worst. I can wallow and wrestle for 20 minutes and still not get it poof-less. Never mind that I’m sprawled across the bed trying to stretch that last wrinkle out of the sheet I’m lying on. I’m my own worst fitted-sheet enemy.

It’s ironic that I work up a sweat before I even get the top sheet on, isn’t it? Because I think that means I need to wash the sheets again. Sigh.

And while I’m on the topic, I’ll also admit that not only can’t I make the bed without draping myself across the whole thing, I never seem to be able to finish the job without circling the bed several dozen times. I’m like some kind of weird bed-buzzard.

Not to keep “talking in circles” here, but it’s good for us to think about how we talk. Often. Sometimes we need to get rid of unnecessary little poofs in our conversation. We’re reminded in Eph. 4:29 to “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.”

Anyone else notice that our conversation should “fit”? Corrupt, poofy, graceless words can take the form of profane language or inappropriate comments. Or they can be cutting or needlessly critical. Or sometimes they’re empty, flattering words that are designed to fit whatever people want to hear rather than what will actually help them build spiritual maturity. It may seem kind to say words that a person wants to hear, but if they’re not a true fit, they can steer people in the wrong direction. Talk about a wrinkle. Paul said in the same chapter in Ephesians, “But speaking the truth in love, let us grow in every way into Him who is the head – Christ” (Eph. 4:15). There must be grace, must be truth and must be love to grow in Christ-likeness.

Dirty, lewd or profane – dishonest, hurtful or empty – none of that talk fits into a life of grace. When we’re full of words that don’t fit the occasion, we are our own worst enemy. And we’re no friend to others either.

I don’t ever want to find myself working harder wrestling a fitted sheet than I work at growing in using my words well. Grace and truth in love. Those are the words that will fit. With hardly a struggle.

The struggle with the fitted sheets, however, will likely continue. And that’s before we talk about the folding. Don’t even get me started.