Recently I received a parrot as a gift. The parrot had a bad attitude and an even worse vocabulary. Every word out of the bird’s mouth was rude, obnoxious, and laced with profanity.
I tried and tried to change the bird’s attitude by consistently saying only polite words, playing soft music, and anything else I could think of to ‘clean up’ the bird’s vocabulary.
Finally, I was fed up and I yelled at the parrot. The parrot yelled back. I shook the parrot and the parrot got angrier and even ruder.
So, in desperation, I threw up my hands, grabbed the bird and put him in the freezer. For a few minutes the parrot squawked and kicked and screamed. Then suddenly there was total quiet.
Not a peep was heard for over a minute. Fearing that I’d hurt the parrot, I quickly opened the door to the freezer.
The parrot calmly stepped out onto my outstretched arms and said “I believe I may have offended you with my rude language and actions. I’m sincerely remorseful for my inappropriate transgressions and I fully intend to do everything I can to correct my rude and unforgivable behavior.”
I was stunned at the change in the bird’s attitude. As I was about to ask the parrot what had made such a dramatic change in his behavior, the bird continued, “May I ask what that turkey did?!”*
Now, with a belly full of leftovers and smile on your face, go get yourself a good night’s sleep. You will need it, because, tomorrow, we all head back into the rat race of life. And remember, as we draw ever closer to the next big holiday, Christmas, you will likely encounter many people who act just like that old parrot.
And while it may be tempting to give them the big freeze, or even to yell at them, or even worse, to seize and to shake them, remember this one thing: the mere fact that they behave the way they do may very well be a clear indication that they do not know Who Jesus was or what He did.
Chances are, if you can answer that question for them, then you will most likely see a considerable change in their demeanor as well. And that will bring much more than a mere smile to your face. It will bring joy to your heart!