Kids put the weirdest things in their mouths. Everything from boogers to toys go in as adults watch in horror! Parents spend lots of time trying to help their kids not choke or become seriously ill due to the spread of germs. “Keep your hands out of your mouth!” we exclaim constantly…”and don’t drink after anybody!” When they’re babies they want to lick everything to see how it tastes. As they grow, who knows what they’re thinking?!
Several years ago, a friend of mine had just given birth to a baby girl. Two-year old big sister had come to the hospital for a visit and to see if the baby was worth keeping. Mom was tending to the baby for only one second. When she turned around, big sister was licking the floor! Licking the floor, I said! Mom just about died! Big sister only got really, really sick. Yuck! Yuck! Yuck!
Another family I know was at Disney World on vacation. It’s the land where dreams come true for kids! While waiting in line for an exciting ride Dad found the young daughter picking the gum off a handrail and chewing it! Chewing it, I said! Gross!
Aaron’s Mom still gets nauseous when she thinks about when she caught him eating the gum from under a table at Pizza Hut when he was a toddler!
When kids have braces, they definitely need to be careful what goes in their mouth. Hard, crunchy and chewy-gooey stuff can make a mess with brackets! It’s a lesson quickly learned by most. Sometimes when kids break those rules-chewing on pencils and other strange things, they break brackets constantly and will be 30 when they get their metal off. (You know who you are.)
A few weeks ago, Branson, who’s four, had a penny in his hand-at first. Suddenly, his Mom noticed it was gone! He had swallowed it! Both Mom and Dad were horrified! They took Branson to the doctor. They would have to take an x-ray to see what was going on. The x-ray was scary but showed exactly where the penny was. If it didn’t come out on its own, they would have to do surgery. Mom was “watching for it” and you know what that means!
After several days, the elders at Branson’s church laid hands on him and prayed for the coin to…”pass”. The next x-ray, a few days later, showed that it was gone! Woohoo and praise the Lord! At some time, the coin had mysteriously come out!
As adults, we also need to be careful what goes into our bodies. Too much fat can clog arteries and be bad for our hearts! Too much sugar isn’t good, either. And we need to be careful what we put in our minds! It makes sense when you think about it. Negative and/or inappropriate music, reading material, television, or internet sites can have a bad effect on us, as well. What goes in will come out in some way. What is that saying? GIGO? Garbage In, garbage Out! Matthew 12:34 says: “For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” (Is it just me or does it look like Branson’s penny is right over his heart?!)
When our daughter was young she loved watching Rugrats. The only problem was the more she watched Angelica, the more she acted like Angelica! (Angelica was the stinker on the show if you didn’t know.) What goes in will come out in some way! (We banned Rugrats at our house.)
Philippians 4:8 gives us some guidelines about what should go in: “…my friends, fill your minds with those things that are good and that deserve praise: things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, and honorable.” (GNT)
If we are believers and followers of Christ, we need to make sure what’s coming out of our mouth is proper, too. Can those around us regularly tell by our speech that we know Jesus? If we know Him, we should act like it and sound like it. Would it shock people if they found out you went to church!
Branson doesn’t know me, but his penny incident taught me a lesson I hope I don’t ever forget!
Dawn Reed is a columnist for The Floyd County Times.