I was reading the Proverb for the day( day of month corresponds with the Proverb I read for the day) last week and was reminded of
six seven things God hates. Arrogant eyes and a lying tongue are on the list before "hands that shed innocent blood". The proverb does not categorize lying into 'little white lies" or lies told to parents, friends, co-workers, or employers. God's Word plainly states He hates lying in with five other things He hates, and isn't gossip lying? (Proverbs 6:16-19)
The rest of this post was written last year.
Don't lie and don't gossip are two "commands" I was determined to instill in my children. Not as they became teenagers, but as soon as they could talk. I wanted them to be honest and authentic children who grew up to be truthtellers. Not only did I need to encourage them in these commands but I had to 'walk the talk'. I also wanted them to love God with all their heart, with all their soul and with all their mind and their neighbor as themselves.
30+ years ago I started going with Rob to church, many times to hear him preach. I wasn't sure then I would ever be a pastor's wife but I determined then to 'keep my mouth shut' most of the time and not repeat anything I heard in counseling, in confidence or in the church foyer. It was a practice I would need to keep, because that young woman became a pastor's wife. Rob has been able to share his heart with me over the years knowing I will not repeat or gossip about him or anything he has told me. Am I perfect in this regard? No...but I refuse to gossip or lie...and isn't gossiping lying?
Just a quick glance at my Bible concordance I find 3 Scriptures that talk about gossip.
Romans 1:29, 2 Corinthians 12 :20 and 1 Timothy 5:13 rank gossip with some of what we would call 'bad sins'...envy, murder, God-haters, jealousy, selfish ambitions, busybodies.
Why this rambling about gossip and lying? Because I run into too many girls and women who have been on the receiving end of hurtful talk and well meaning prayer requests.
Sally* telling Amy* that she thinks Patty* is leaving her husband for another man so we should pray for her. Or *Patty whispering to *Amy that *Sally should really go on a diet so she can hang onto her husband...and don't thin people really reflect what God wants for a woman?
How exactly does gossip show I love God and my neighbor?
The drama of who said what to whom is never ending and needs to be called for what it is...gossip.
My admonition and encouragement to you my female readers especially is to
just say no to gossip.
If it isn't something you would say to someone face to face, i.e-email or texting fall into this category, then don't say it.
With the Holy Spirit of God living in me I can do all things through him who strengthens me and knowing our Great God will help me in becoming wise...including or maybe especially what comes out of my mouth.
James 3 is a great place to start.
I had my editor(Rob) read this just to make sure I wasn't coming on too strong. He said gossip is a serious matter and has to be talked about strongly. All said in love my friends.