Thursday, April 27, 2006

The Thing About Words...

Did you watch American Idol both nights this week?

I have to say... On Tuesday night I was very, very bothered by the things Randy, Paula and Simon said to Katharine after her song. I mean, I've watched this show for years, yet rarely--rarely--have Randy and Paula's comments, to me, come-off sounding over-the-top-critical-bordering-on-cruel. As for Simon, well, that's just old hat for him to sound mean. Yet on Tuesday night, his dreadful comments to Katharine really, really upset me. I felt he had humiliated Katharine in front of millions of people and I admired Katharine's enormous courage in not running off the stage in tears--which I, certainly, would have done, had it been me. In fact, Tom missed that part of the show so the next morning I told him what happened and I got all-teary-eyed just recounting the details for him.

The whole thing was odd. I mean, hey... I'm a big girl... I watch American Idol every week and by the next day, generally, I forget which kid is even still left in the competition. But this was different. Off and on all day Wednesday I was haunted by Simon's especially-sarcastic and unjust treatment of Katharine. And I'm sure I must have said some kind of prayer about it, but don't ask just what I prayed. I can't remember exactly.

Then along came Wednesday night! Ryan said that many people had called in complaining the night before. And then Simon nodded and did something I'd never seen him do (he may have before, but I'd not seen it)... He said, after watching the tape of the previous night's show, he felt he and the other judges owed one of the contestants an apology. Oh my, you should have seen me... I jumped up and shouted, "Katharine, right? Say it! Say it's Katharine!"

And that is just what he said.

Oh my... I was squealing and jumping up and down (Tom was at work, so I was alone and able to act quite silly).

Yet, when all that happened, this verse immediately came to my mind:

"A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pitchers of silver." ... Proverbs 25:11

It was as though Simon's apology brought a type of healing--certainly for Katharine-- but in a way, for me, too. I felt such a release from that nagging feeling of injustice suffered by another person... the thing which had haunted me all day.

Words are powerful. Apologies are both powerful and healing. And I wish we'd all get over the lie which tells us we will appear smaller if we apologize to others.

The exact opposite is true.

"Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof." ...Proverbs 18:21

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