I heard the same story from two different people over a period of twenty four hours. It was the same story, yet the reaction of the two were completely different.
This is story A:
It all started when someone came into the store where we work. This person found the items that she needed and was at the checkout. During the checkout process, the COT was making conversation, offering the little booklets we have up front and generally having a good time. Another associate (we'll call her "H") was observing and contributing to the conversation as well. Apparently, this customer was a hoot. She was making little sarcastic comments about the various authors of the booklets and our associates were enjoying the show. From what I can tell, our associates may have offered a little sarcasm of their own. Then, said customer remembered that she needed something else and went to get it. When she came back, a different associate was there to ring her up. When he (we'll call him "T") offered her the same little booklets, she offered the same sarcastic remarks. "H" was still up at the counter and offered some explanation to "T" about the previous conversation and so forth. Said hooting customer left and life went back to normal. "H" later came and told me what had happened so that I could find it funny too.
Fast forward to the next morning during prayer/devotion time.
This is story B:
During the course of conversation, "T" mentions a customer that had been in the previous day. "T" said that he had offered a little booklet to her and she said, "Oh, I don't like so and so. They've had a facelift." Well, "T" stood there for a minute and then offered another author to which she responds, "oh, I don't like them either. I wouldn't have anything of theirs in my house." Being as we are taught to be nonconfrontational, "T" drops the subject and finishes the transaction. But he is concerned over this person's attitude and lifts her up in prayer.
As I sat and played both conversations back through my head, I had to stop and think. How many times have I made some stupid, sarcastic comment?
And even though the person that I was talking to "got it", how many other people who might have overheard, didn't get it?
How many times do my thoughtless words damage my witness?
All because I'm trying to be funny?
Where should we draw the line?