Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear -Ephesians 4:29
There are no redeeming qualities about gossip. Gossip is always a sin. What we talk about speaks to what we believe. Out of our mouth, our heart speaks. If our mouths are willing to jump to slander, what does that say about our hearts? Our we showing love for our neighbor?
Sometimes we deceive or justify ourselves that gossip is out of concern for our neighbor. We know better. No good comes from gossip. Gossip has most likely affected all of us at some time in our lives. Do we remember how that felt? How we felt betrayed and abandoned by the people we knew were spreading gossip.?
Gossip is a very destructive sin. Why do we participate in gossip? Gossip does not build up, but seeks to put attention on ourselves as we seek to put another in a bad light. To lift ourselves up. So gossip is rooted in pride. Thinking too highly of ourselves, and not loving our neighbor.
As Christian women we should seek to see our fellow neighbors in the best light, only want for them good and no harm. Our words can be very harmful and hurtful. We know this, we have been the subject of gossip. This should make us very slow to speak. And when another woman wants to engage in gossip about another, to instead change the subject or gently tell her that you are convicted about gossip and no longer can engage in it. I have done this, and some will get very offended but a friend will understand. Who do we want to please? Our friends or God?
Have I ever engaged in gossip? Yes, I have. I am not proud of that, but ashamed. Ashamed that I would seek to hurt someone by my words to another about them. And we all know the harm it has and can cause.
Another word for gossip is slander, and Scriptures are very clear that we are not to spread slander or do anything that endangers our neighbors life. We are instead to love our neighbor. Putting our neighbor above our own selves. The godless destroy their neighbors with their words, we are not to be like those in the world-the godless. We serve a wonderful, merciful Savior and we should seek to glorify Him with our Words.
Gossip causes one to stir up conflict or drama. Perverse, is a twisting, not normal act. That is what gossip is-twisted, and not normal. It seeks to separate friends, and it has many times done this very thing. We mustn’t take part in this.
32 Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
Gossip is like feeding a fire, it burns hotter as you continue feeding it. But if the fire is doused by a woman that seeks her neighbors good and not harm, the fire is quenched.
When you are tempted to gossip, think about someone saying the very thing to someone about you. How that would hurt you? I have done this and yes, sometimes I winced thinking of the pain my words would have caused.
Could we instead pray for that person that at first we had been tempted to slander? Praying for our neighbors is a form of loving them. Seeking their good. Then redeem the time in building up that same person you were tempted to slander. You will be obeying God, and loving your neighbor.In that moment You know that you did not cause hurt, but encouraged the hearer in the building up of your friend. In this way we guard our hearts from the corruption of Gossip. And this is pleasing to God.
Things to think about:
- Do you seek to build up people in general.
- Are you known for your gossip or as someone that does not engage in gossip ?
- Do you get pleasure out of hearing gossip or slander from and about another?
- What will you do the next time someone seeks to gossip to you?
- Do you think being a gossip hurts someone Christian witness?
If there were no gratified hearers of ill reports, there would be an end of the trade of spreading them.
- Charles Spurgeon