Don’t stick out your tongue!

Summer evenings at camp is always something I think back upon. The peacefulness of being out in nature, away from the city noises and lights. The stars seemed more plentiful and the lightning bugs were everywhere!

One evening I remember very vividly. My Mom, Dad, Grandma, Grandpa, and I had just finished dinner. Summer dinners at camp were always the best. They included summer salads like potato salad or macaroni salad, meat of some sort that was cooked on the grill, and always cantaloupe or watermelon slices. When we were finished, we would all carry things back to the kitchen of the camp and clean up. Then it was porch time.

I was only about 3 at the time, but it was so fun sitting on the roof-covered front porch of the camp that was tree-lined, and overlooked the river. It was a big porch with enough chairs for everybody, and then some! We’d talk, tell stories, listen to the music playing on the record player, look at the lightning bugs and chase after them, and watch the boats go up and down the river. I remember that I loved to be on my Dad’s lap as his back was to the railing of the porch, so I could see down to the river. It was getting dark, the lightning bugs were starting to come out, I could smell a campfire that our neighbors were having. As I was facing my Dad, while listening to the others talk, there was a strange thing that had climbed up thru the tree and was laying on a branch behind my Dad’s head. It was black, and was looking right at me. Hmmm.. It started to stick its tongue out at me – how funny! I started to stick my tongue out at it! It seemed as if we were in our own little world making faces at each other and sticking our tongues out at the same time. It made me giggle so hard! This strange thing didn’t have any arms or legs, so I didn’t know how it moved, but it was moving closer to my Dad’s head. I was laughing, sticking out my tongue at it and moving my head like it was doing, UNTIL… Someone yelled ‘there’s a snake by your head, Dave!’

All of a sudden, the peaceful and quiet time ended, and I was wooshed away, chairs were flipping sideways, Mom and Grandma were yelling, and Dad and Grandpa were in a battle with a 6 foot snake. Brooms were swinging, until Grandpa brought out a big shovel with a very sharp edge. That was the end of the snake.

It wasn’t long after that evening that the big porch was screened in so that nothing else living could slither into our quiet, peaceful evenings on the porch. Even though the snake was so very quiet in it’s movements; and to my little eyes, appeared to be harmless and rather funny with his tongue sticking out, it was dangerous! It could have hurt us. Be careful little eyes what we see.

How often does that happen to us today, even in our adult lives? We are living rather peacefully and quietly minding our own business when something sinful slides in, almost without notice. A white lie to keep peace or to exaggerate a story telling experience? The clerk at the store makes a little mistake and gives us a $5 bill in change instead of $1, and we walk away as a winner? Pens, sticky notes, or other supplies from work come home with us in our briefcase or bag? We start to listen to off color jokes, or some juicy gossip about someone we know? There are life-things that take very top priority in our lives – our jobs, money, other people? They become so very top priority that they become idols. Bad words sometimes slip through our lips, even including God’s name. Be careful little lips what we say.

With the internet so abundant in our lives, and in the lives of our children and grandchildren, there is a vast universe of unsavory things to see. Wrong things that we shouldn’t be reading slither onto the screen, and little eyes (or big eyes) are compromising their integrity and their eyes by seeing things that shouldn’t be seen. Be careful little eyes what you see.

Some of these examples seem like wrongs that are too small to mention in the span of our lives, but they’re like the snake that quietly slither into our presence almost without notice. Sin invades our lives with the same quietness, without fanfare, without acknowledgment from us that it’s wrong. Once we accept them; or worse, don’t acknowledge them as wrongs, they become acceptable occurrences and we can easily move on to other wrongs. Our character, our moral compass, our ability to make a judgement of right or wrong, is easily penetrated with small wrongs so often that they no longer seem wrong.

Margaret Thatcher once wrote ‘Watch your thoughts for they become words. watch your words for they become actions. Watch your actions for they become habits. Watch your habits for they become your character. And watch your character for it becomes your destiny. What we think, we become. My father always said that … and I think I’m fine.’ Are you fine?

Several years ago, my son got a tattoo. He got a tattoo with an evil being on one side of his back by his shoulder, and an angel-being on the other side. When I asked him what the significance of those tattoos were, he said they were to remind him that good and evil were always vying for his attention. How utterly true that is for all of us! It’s as if on one shoulder, the good cheerleader is speaking in our ear; but, on the other hand, it might not hurt just this one time to have a little fun. The evil cheerleader is making excuses and setting up the case on the other shoulder into the other ear. Isn’t that true? Can you relate to this at all?

Several years ago, we heard a story that was impactful. An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. “A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy. “It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.” He continued, “The other is good – he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you – and inside every other person, too.” The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?” The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.” There is a good video on YouTube about this story.

Which one are you feeding?

I’m reminded of a song that I learned in Sunday School decades ago, and its still very true today. Let’s remind ourselves of these truths again.

O be careful little eyes what you see
O be careful little eyes what you see
For the Father up above
Is looking down in love
So, be careful little eyes what you see

O be careful little ears what you hear
O be careful little ears what you hear
For the Father up above
Is looking down in love
So, be careful little ears what you hear

O be careful little tongue what you say
O be careful little tongue what you say
For the Father up above
Is looking down in love
So, be careful little tongue what you say

O be careful little hands what you do
O be careful little hands what you do
For the Father up above
Is looking down in love
So, be careful little hands what you do

O be careful little feet where you go
O be careful little feet where you go
For the Father up above
Is looking down in love
So, be careful little feet where you go

O be careful little heart whom you trust
O be careful little heart whom you trust
For the Father up above
Is looking down in love
So, be careful little heart whom you trust

O be careful little mind what you think
O be careful little mind what you think
For the Father up above
Is looking down in love
So, be careful little mind what you think
So, be careful little mind what you think

Now I know why my Mom would say ‘don’t stick out your tongue’!
Be blessed today!

Be careful little eyes what you see https://youtu.be/pqFrXwpTI-w



Published by Candy Morgans

Being recently retired from the Healthcare Industry, and the spouse of a retired Methodist Minister, I find some time on my hands, and a strong desire to share experiences and develop relationships with others. God is my driving force, and I have humor and joy in my heart.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: