A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart. What you say flows from what is in your heart.” Luke 6:45
Pardon me, but your slip is showing. Change is everywhere. I can well remember my Mama getting dressed for church. In those day she always wore a couple of extra “accessories.” First, she was a big fan of what I guess was called girdles. As I remember, these things were designed to hold things in place around a lady’s waist. I never saw Mama put one on, but I know she wore one. How? When we were sitting in church, I would get bored and start doing “things.” Things are anything to help pass the time. So, I would poke my Mama in the side, only to find that it was hard as a rock. As impenetrable as the Great Wall of China, there was something firming things up. I suspect it was “the girdle.”
The other thing was something called a slip. As best as I could tell it was worn under a lady’s dress to ensure that nothing was seen through. Now I know more about this because my Mama always wanted to be sure her slip wasn’t showing. It was important to have the slip shorter than your dress by a couple of inches. Well, since she couldn’t see behind her (we didn’t have a full-length mirror), she would say, “Dewayne, is my slip showing?” I would get behind her and give her the report. I think in our early years of marriage, slips were still in vogue. I’m pretty sure Judy asked me to give her the “slip” report too.
Nobody, and I mean nobody, wanted to get to church and have their slip showing. How many times did we get somewhere public and there in front of us would be a lady with her slip showing, Mama would sadly shake her head and say, “Oh my, her slip is showing. She should have someone check.” Well, some time ago slips went out of vogue and so with it the way of the slip report. No slip…no report. But the saying still lingers.
When you hear someone say “your slip is showing” it means that something they intended, or perhaps should have intended, to be hidden is there for everyone to see. Well, here’s a news flash. Someone needs to tell everyone that their “slip” is showing in social media. Now I am not a Facebook person. I use it to post Grits, to make a couple of church announcements and wish people happy birthday. But beyond that, it just isn’t my thing. But even with that limited exposure, and thanks to folks who sometimes tell me what they see, well, there are a lot of “slips” showing.
I’ve almost stopped being shocked at what people write on Facebook. It seems people confuse the privacy of their journal with Facebook. Things that should never be written or spoken spew on the pages like a bad case of the stomach flu. Hurtful, painful words too often fill the screen of our devices. I remember one time a lady who attended our church at the time wrote some very un-Jesus like words. I asked her about it and she said, “Well, I didn’t know the whole world would see them.” “What? Uh?”
So, I think when we see someone being unkind and harsh in social media we should just say, “Pardon me, but your slip is showing.” Now “showing your slip” with unkind words is never right. You know your Mama taught you, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” Well, Jesus gives us another perspective and warning. He tells us that out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks. In other words, what comes out of our mouth is simply revealing what is in our hearts. And if hurtful, unkind, and sometimes untrue words flow from our mouths, or our fingers, according to Jesus, it is just revealing what is in our hearts.
I know, if you aren’t a Jesus follower that doesn’t make a lot of sense but hey, kindness is really in vogue these days even in the secular world. It might be selective kindness, but it is there. Now, if you are a Jesus follower, God gives us a word for this kind of word stomach flu. It is called sin. No matter the circumstances or the way we attempt to justify it, it is sin. If you feel the need to express your displeasure with someone, why not try praying. God is always up for an authentic prayer on behalf of someone and you also won’t be surprised to hear “your slip is showing.”
I happen to be one of those people who too often speak without thinking but I am learning to hit the pause button. They say the older you get the more you lose your filter. You say things…and write things…that are just not right, or kind or both. Then, you end up telling God you are sorry and experiencing that regret thing. Of course, depending on your lack of filter, you may not have any remorse…and that is the worst thing of all.
So, what do you say? Let’s start a “Pardon me, your slip is showing” campaign. It is a gentle way of letting someone know that their communication is, shall we say, embarrassing. They may not thank you now but maybe, just maybe, they will later. And if you are like me and sometimes wrestle with putting your mouth in gear when you shouldn’t, ask God to help. He will, trust me. This is a big deal to Him. The good news is that like everything, “He’s got this.”