Thursday, July 26, 2007

Gossip



I remember a while back asking a pastors wife how she avoided gossip. I had a friend that I could not avoid and always found myself knee deep in gossip and did not know how to handle the situation well and felt it was affecting my own spiritual life. Her advice was basically to walk away or change the subject. Two great suggestions, but I thought here on this post we'd go a little more in depth:

How can I avoid gossiping?

1. Think godly thoughts about others.
2. Agree with friends and family not to gossip.
3. Avoid settings that lead to gossip.
4. Never name names.
5. Say nothing.

How to eliminate gossip in our lives:

1. No idle time.
2. Be wise in phone conversations, cut it short or have answering machine take messages.
3. Don't waste time in wasteful talking. Also don't talk too much. (Proverbs 10:19)
4. Don't answer things hastefully, you can take time to answer questions by saying you need to pray about your answer.

Some wise advice:

1. Remember the source of slander---the devil.
2. Realize the causes--hatred, jealousy, envy, an evil eye and heart.
3. Choose your company carefully--isolate yourself if you must.
4. Choose activities carefully.
5. Praise only.
6. Pray for yourself in this area and for others who harm you.
7. Deal with gossip as sin.

What do I do when others gossip?

1. Leave the scene.
2. Declare your discomfort. "I'm sorry, maybe it's me, but I'm not comfortable with this conversation. Could we please change the subject?"
3. Guard you facial expressions. Ex:Rolling our eyes, shaking our heads, raising our eyebrows this can smear others reputations too, or plant seeds of doubt in others minds.
4. Be ready with a positive phrase or two: ex: "We must pray for her.", etc.

Let's use our tongues to glorify God and nurture a heart of love towards others.

5 comments:

  1. Yes....absolutely. I have done all these things and have found myself quite 'alone' but never lonely. Gossip is hideously lurking and 'infecting' souls. My home is so quiet, compared to the 'ring-a-ling' days when the phone rang off the hook. I ran a prayer chain. You wouldn't think that ministry would be a problem. I just started a blog today. I am bookmarking you, dear.

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  2. How very true! I had a friend who never talked - she could only gossip. Eventually we lost contact and... I think I'm better off. Gossip makes our spiritual lives deteriorate.

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  3. What wonderful advice! I am a Family Readiness Group Leader for my husband's Army unit and gossip and rumors is something the ladies in my group do struggle with. How damaging it can be, even in a practical sense. I have such a tough time trying to discourage it in a gracious manner. I usually just say that I do not want to know what they are about to say and change the subject. I hope that my unwillingness to participate sets the example, but I often wonder if I should be firmer. It truly pollutes the mind and spirit as well. I have to be on my guard as well, because it is too easy to go down that road.

    Thank you for sharing such wonderful advice!

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  4. VERY helpful advice!
    I will remember this.
    Thank you.
    Rose

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  5. This is a wonderful blog! The only point I'd like to add to would be your last point. It seems in Christian circles women often lead gossip with "We ought to pray for..."

    I do think your point is excellent to use that as a positive point but we must be diligent not to allow that point to lead us further into gossip - it is so easy to do!

    Thank you for your many wonderful blogs :)

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