Backyard Discretion: A Primer

Below is a guest post from my writer friend Maleah Warner which I wanted to share here because I loved it. I also wanted to share it here because someone recently told me they won't share my blogposts because I occasionally talk about religion on my blog, not just self-reliance. That comment made me want to share more things about religion, not less. If you don't see God in the backyard, what's the point of trying for a backyard renaissance? So without further ado, here is a beautiful and smart contribution to our renaissance from Maleah:

Lately, I've been thinking about praying for discretion.

I already pray for Wisdom.

I've done this for years, because although I can be slow to figure some things out, it didn't take me too long to realize that I am pretty stupid on my own.

I also pray for Faith and for Charity. By myself, I'm not so good at either one of those. So I'm a bit hesitant to add more to the already lengthy list of attributes I need to develop, but this prayer thing really works. 

You can pray for anything. I pray to find the video camera memory card because I need to record the 5th grade play in one hour. I pray to be a better visiting teacher. When I'm not in the mood to pray, I pray, "Please help me to  want to pray."

Let's face it, the monotony of life gets heavy and sometimes I want to throw in the whole load of towels.

Most days I just pray, "Please help me want to do the laundry."

And it works, it really does.

For example, several years ago I decided that I took life way too seriously and that I needed to develop a sense of humor, so I started praying for  humor. Then (like most things) I forgot about it, until a year or so later I came across a page in my journal where I had written: Things to pray for: *Humor

And I realized that I am funnier that I used to be. I promise. I am.

So about this discretion thing…

In a church lesson about honesty, a lady asked, "If my friend asks me if her hair looks bad, and it does, do I tell her the truth?"

Another lady said, you can be honest and discrete. You can use good judgment in your honesty."

So I got to thinking about Discretion and all its synonyms: Care, Consideration, Deliberateness, Diplomacy, Foresight, Good Sense, Good Judgment, Gumption, Maturity, Presence of Mind, Prudence, Thoughtfulness, Tact, and Wisdom.  

If one word can include all that, then I think there is room on my prayer list for one more word.

You can read more from Maleah at


  1. Like it already just bc of your opening statement. What you share interest me a great deal, btw, the sourdough sample I received from you when I bought your bread book is doing awesome. Though it has suffered my neglect. I just referred back to ur blog and followed ur instructions and it has survived moves, neglect, etc. I have since dried and restarted it. :) and it loves to bubble up all over my countertop, which never gets old. Thank you for sharing, now I'm going to read your post.

  2. I ponder that one too. My take is, does the person really want your honest opinion? I have found some people give their opinion saying they are being honest. To me, their is a difference between giving your opinion when someone asks for your honest opinion, and someone who just gives their opinion bc they think they are right. At the end, I think it's best to answer as gently and honestly as u can.