Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Taming the Tongue Tuesday

Well it's time for TAME our tongue Tuesday!

Last Friday I met with a group of Christian mothers at the park for some R&R with the kids. We had planned on being there...maybe an hour or so.  Well TWO and half hour later I was starting to say..."I've got to go."  "I need to pick up my son on time."  "I need to leave."  

The thing was...I didn't want to leave.  The weather was perfect...my kid only melted down once (so that was perfect) and our conversation was...pretty much perfect.

I'm not saying everything we said or did was perfect but I can't remember anything I said or anyone said was in the realm of gossiping and slander.  Many times when women get together we reduce ourselves to pawns in the devil's playground with our tongues.  They go flapping and we start attacking other sisters and brothers that aren't in our mist. (remember we've talked about that it's either jealously, envy or both).  When I'm among non Christians...I'm expect that. They're not believers.  They're not living godly lives and it's not unusual for someone to start talking about "Did you see her son with THAT new girlfriend?" or "Her husband left her for the secretary?  I knew that was gonna happen."  It's not shocking for the unsaved to beam when they slander..."She wore the same slacks to work last week...she needs to go shopping."  or "Boy, after the baby she really let herself go..."

But among the saved....well that's a different matter.  The bible says in Proverbs 17:9 that "He who covers over an offense promotes love, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends."  Proverbs 16:28 says "A perverse man stirs up dissension, and a gossip separates close friends."

Many a Christian friend has been lost to gossip and slander.  God doesn't tolerate ugly and folks neither should we.  (Well actually God doesn't tolerate SIN...and we shouldn't either.)  If you're in the company of slander and gossip and it's coming from a "Christian" you're required to stop them cold.  Titus says women are to be "reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine,".  Well if you live and play around slanderers and heavy drinkers...you'll end up the same way.

I've had to check myself ...do I have slandering friends who I have to give up? But it's fun to be around them Lord.  I don't do the slandering first...I just listen in.  Sometimes I defend who they're talking about so isn't it o.k?  Proverbs is clear..."a gossip separates close friends." Maybe we can see them in passing but we don't have to stop and give them precious time and energy. We're all so busy and hanging out with like breeds like.  I don't want to end up being a gossip so I guess I can't hang around them either.

Well I'm slowly heading on the right track.  The girls I were at with at the park aren't perfect. Isabel and I on the phone have stopped ourselves mid sentence to say..."We shouldn't have said that."  They're prone to gossip and slander, as am I...but on that day...it wasn't the hallmark of that day.

And for the other times where I've failed...and failed miserably...well I need to pray that I don't put myself in those situations with those people again.  God wants us to honor him in what we do...and in what we say.


Love Abounds At Home said...

I'm been on the receiving end of being gossiped about. It hurts. What hurts the most is who partakes in the gossip about you. What I've learned over the years is that if someone wants to gossip about someone to you, they are doing the same thing behind your back. I have stop going to some ladies Bible studies because prayer requests turned into gossip sessions.
When someone comes to me and says "I have something to tell you, but keep this between us." I tell them that I can't. I have to tell at least 1 person. What they don't know is that the 1 person is my husband. It usually stops the conversation.
My daughter has so many friends in college. She said it's because I taught her not to talk about people because it would make the person hearing it insecure. Yes, they may participate, but they will be wondering if you're doing the same thing to them.
Good post my friend :)

Lorrie said...

I'm slowly learning that you to be a friend...you have to show yourself friendly and that includes not talking about your friends when the other isn't there. I too am starting to shy away from "ladies bible study" because it turns into a gossiping fest. One expection was one we did this summer where we were forced to put our lives up against 2 Titus. We started with 25 ladies but only had 10 left. It was HARD work to have to align your life with the bible. We'd rather just study the bible and tickle our ears...we really don't want to follow what it says.

Beth in NC said...

Ok, "God doesn't tolerate ugly" made me giggle. Ha. But you're right!

I'm so glad you ladies shined for Jesus!


charmaine said...

oh, i love this post. this is so true we have all at some point and time been guilty of gossiping. but as you live and read your word and apply it to your life, you will continue to see change. God's word is so important daily, because the enemy will try and side track you and sneak that gossiping spirit in, but thank you Jesus for His Holy Spirit for keeping us in check. when we get out of line, the Holy Spirit is always there to correct us. you'll know when you've said something wrong. we have to continue to pray and ask God to reveal to us anything that is not of Him and help us to remove it. gossiping is a bad spirit that we all have fallen short of, but thank God for His forgiveness. thank you for this motivational post, this will help us all to be mindful of who we are around and to watch our conversation.

also, i wanted to say that i absolutely love your blog and you have a beautiful family!

God Bless,

Bethany said...

Right on, sister. I am generally good at "keeping secrets" but am always struggling with basic venting . . . . reassuring myself about how I feel about someone by telling a third party about the issue. That is something I am working on. I need to pray, to journal, and at very least to use no names--"I have this friend who annoys me in this way . . . . " etc. let's all hold one another accountable!

Beth in NC said...

Oh girl, that comment you made on my post cracked me up! LOL

Rachel said...

This is a great reminder! I am blessed to still have many close friends from high school and even earlier who have churched with me, worked with me, and studied with me through the years. It's easy, then, for a group like that to feel like they almost have the authority to comment on each others' lives in this way, and it's really unloving, even if it starts with a good intention. This is dangerous ground, and one we should flee from instead of passively acknowledging that it's unhealthy.

Keasley said...

Thank you for visiting my blog - I totally agree that we definitely should watch what we say about others when they are not in our presence, and to others when they are. My pastor calls the tongue "the pink tornado" because it can destroy everything in sight. Honestly, when we make an effort to hold our tongue - and even when we have those - "I shouldn't have said that" moments - the fact that we are trying to do better often brings a beneficial inner peace. We can live that much easier with ourselves when we know we are destroying someone else's character or reputation with our "pink tornado". Be blessed!

Keasley said...

I hope I didn't create too much confusion - I hope readers recognized that the last sentence in my comment should have been: "We can live that much easier with ourselves when we know we are NOT destroying someone's else's character or reputation with our "pink tornado". Sometimes my typing gets ahead of my brain. Sorry!