A member of my family ask if everyone is talking about them and their business. I began to think what is good to tell about someone and what I should avoid telling. I am the mother and grandmother of this large family. My desire is that all my family love each other. When a family member ask me about someone else in the family, I enjoy sharing about them and their lives. WRONG!!!! It seems that my sharing was not appreciated. So I began to avoid telling what I know. It sounds like an excuse but I never thought it was bad. Well it was gossip. So I had to break the habit and I am still trying to harness my tongue. For lent I have been studying scriptures on the tongue, that I started at Advent. Before I studied this topic I felt that I was ok. It is always good to evaluate how pure your actions are in the eyes of God’s word. I now know that I need to break this terrible habit.
I have experienced the harmful effects of gossip in the church, family and friends. The consequence was a destroyed ministry, an unhappy family and loss of friendship. I no a woman that left the church forever, when she was told what was being said about her personally. Gossip is murder, it kills relationships and our own self esteem. It hurts and destroys unity. In our world it is accepted, but for a Christian it is murder, and we must avoid it.
The words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to a man’s inmost parts.
Are you guilty of this fun pastime or are you guilty of listening? I have done both and then judged a person in the past. I have now chosen to ignore all gossip. I have learned that it is usually not the truth. Gossip breaks trust and hurts feelings. Gossip can be defined as information about the behavior or personal life of other people, often without the full truth revealed or known.
A good question to ask yourself;
What is it to you?
Why do you care?
What do you plan to do with the information?
Are you envious or jealous?
Are you getting revenge?
Try telling the gossip something really good about the person. This may help turn the conversation to positive and halt the gossip. If that does not work say your fasting from gossiping.
2 Corinthians 12:20
For I am afraid that when I come I may not find you as I want you to be, and you may not find me as you want me to be. I fear that there may be discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, slander, gossip, arrogance and disorder.
So sounds like this is a common problem with human nature and the flesh in us all. So it is important to realize that we must try to avoid this sin. psalm 19:14 Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in the sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer. I believe prayer and avoiding those who cause us to listen or speak gossip, until we conquer this habit.
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
I can tell you that this is more satisfying and healing for those we love.
A perverse person stirs up conflict, and a gossip separates close friends.
How sad gossip kills friendships and also family closeness.
So this is what my solution is on how to conquer this habit of mine. Even if it would offend me, I will try not to say anything about any member of my family. It is not about what I feel is ok, it is about what they feel is ok. I am trying not to say their name and just focus on who I am talking to. I found this Psalm to pray and I will finish by praying it everyday to help me remember.
A psalm of David.
I sing of mercy and justice;
to you, LORD, I sing praise.
I study the way of integrity;a
when will you come to me?
I act with integrity of heart
within my household.*b
I do not allow into my presence anything base.
I hate wrongdoing;
I will have no part of it.c
May the devious heart keep far from me;
the wicked I will not acknowledge.
Whoever slanders a neighbor in secret
I will reduce to silence.d
Haughty eyes and arrogant heartse
I cannot endure.
I look to the faithful of the land*
to sit at my side.
Whoever follows the way of integrityf
is the one to enter my service.
No one who practices deceit
can remain within my house.
No one who speaks falsely
can last in my presence.g
*Morning after morning I clear all the wicked from the land,
to rid the city of the LORD of all doers of evil
An email I received from Marie Gobin an amazing Bible Study small home group leader. I really loved what she wrote and am sharing it.