Matthew 16

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

We're Networking!

Gossip. I am sure that this is not a topic that we are all too fond of. It hits deep for two reasons:

1. We are all guilty of it
2. We are all victims of it.

Before I go any further, I want to take a moment to say that I too have been guilty of it. It is an easy trap that leads to a vicious cycle of hurt. I also would like to take a moment to apologize to those that have ever been hurt by my words. It was not intentional....and I sincerely apologize.

With that said, I have always wondered in the back of my mind why so many people feel the need to gossip. Although men are guilty of this too, I find that it particularly effects women.
I suspect that it has a great deal to do with how women are created to be relational.....and gossip has just become a nasty by-product.

Take a moment to think of a time that you were hurt by gossip. I am sure the sting still feels heavy on your heart. Gossip can pack a mean punch, and God actually has a lot to say about it.

"What dainty morsels rumors are-but they sink DEEP into ones heart" ~ Proverbs 18:8
" The tongue has the power of LIFE and DEATH...." ~Proverbs 18:21
" A gossip BETRAYS a confidence" ~Proverbs 11:13
"A trouble maker plants seeds of strife, an gossip SEPARATES close friends"~ Proverbs 16:28

The bible even warns us about associating with gossip

" A gossip tells secrets, so don't hang around someone who talks too much " ~ Proverbs 20:19

Freely speaking your mind with words that are intentional will seek to destroy others, kill relationships and ruin your credibility. It also leads to something even harder to get rid of....insecurity and jealousy( that is a whole other issue!). Even though I have been guilty of gossiping before....almost always this thought has never left my mind during the process:

"If they will gossip to me about others, do they gossip about me with others too?"
I am smart enough to know that the answer is...yes!

I read somewhere that speaking of others is not always bad, and I think that should be noted. However it is the content that separates casual talk from gossip.

Here is a tool I found that spoke deep to my heart. I hope you will find it as helpful as I have. I want to encourage you to speak life into your friends and to your friends this week. Don't give gossip the credibility it doesn't deserve. Do your part to stand apart from those that use casual gossip in their daily language. At the end of the day you will be encouraged, refreshed and blessed for stopping the spread of hurt! I challenge you to THINK, and not let a passing thought become someone else's unfortunate reality.

- T – is it true?
-H – is it helpful?
- I – is it inspirational?
- N – is it necessary?
- K – is it kind?

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