One of my boys has a problem with language. Not Grammar – potty mouth. It runs in streaks, but I have to listen out for him just the same. So last Friday when he turned in a paragraph I was a bit surprised, but then not really when a certain word appeared before my eyes. The trouble was, it didn’t make sense in the sentence, and he’s never been quite that blatant before.
I called him up to me. “Read this sentence for me.”
“A sheet makes a good present.”
I thought I would lose it right there. I honestly expected an “r.” He’s much better at phonics than that, although I’m not certain what the other options would have been.
He corrected the sentence without much ado, never really noticing what he had actually spelled. There’s a world of difference between a single “i” and those doubled “ee’s”.
The Eighth Commandment protects us and our neighbor from such things. Did he actually use a word he ought not to have? Yes. Did he mean to? No. It was total ignorance on his part. But if it had been pointed out to him, it would have been a cause to celebrate. Then we’d have had all sorts of things to bear with.
Jesus covers us in Baptism. When the Father looks at us, he sees his Son’s forgiveness of us. All our sins, even those of ignorance are covered by Christ. They need not be spoken of, pointed out and paraded around as something to be celebrated. This world feeds on gossip – whether from our own mouths or the lips of others. It is the celebration of sin. Those named “In the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” through Baptism have more than enough to speak of in rejoicing than to speak of the muck and filth from which they have been pulled.