Seen on a Church Sign
Gossip-Just Squash It!
Normally, I write my Church Sign series over here on the Isaiah 53:5 Project on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. My intention this week was to wrap up our teachings on gossip yesterday and today, and move in in another direction this upcoming Tuesday. Well, yesterday didn’t happen, so instead we will wrap up gossip today. We are going to squash gossip today.
That actually seems to have worked out pretty well, because all we are going to talk about today is how to stop gossip in our churches; what I discovered as I thought and prayed about what to say is the this is not rocket science. Ending gossip is quite easy and really doesn’t require many words. So, today I simply offer a few very simple thoughts on the matter.
How do we squash gossip on our churches?
Don’t do it. Don’t be the guilty one. That sounds too easy, but gossip is like any other sin. First we become tempted to do it, then we succumb to the temptation and do it.
Like any sin, flee temptation. Step away from the gossip. If drunkenness is a problem, most would avoid bars. If gossip is our problem, don’t hang out with the gossips.
Decide before hand. Remember Daniel and the King’s meat? Daniel’s obedience was no accident. Daniel had purposed in his heart, not to disobey. If we know a thing is a problem, it behooves us to pre plan how we will react to temptation, so as not to be caught by surprise.
Think before speaking. Are our words true? Are they kind? Most importantly, are the actually necessary?
Don’t stand by and be part of the problem. This is sort of a repeat. Step away from the Gossip. Our simply not participating in something can speak volumes about how we feel about it.
Teach others how to do right. Note here, that our responses are escalating in directness. When you walk away, somebody will eventually ask you why you do. Or, they actually might just gossip about you to tell the truth. If they do ask, be ready to explain why and teach them what God says about gossip.
Let’s escalate just a bit more. Nobody asks you? Well, maybe it is time to ask them. Hey, my friend, may I speak with you? Love, kindness, and reasonableness can do a lot.
Confront it. Call it like it is, and call them out. I get that this is not for everybody, but in a way it is. Are you the leader in you family? Well, like it or not, you need to tell your flock gossip is a sin and they need to stop. Is a person being directly harmed by the words you hear? We all owe each other protection as brothers and sisters. Are you actually a leader in your church? Well, do I even need to address that? That is what leaders do…lead.
Sometimes we simply have to look another person in the eye and say in effect, “Hey, what you are doing is wrong, and it is sin. Stop it.”
By the way confrontations don’t have to be an in your face thing necessarily. Try this next time the church gossip comes to you with their “concern.”
“Hey I think it’s great you are concerned about (insert name here)! How about we go find them and we can all have a little talk about your concern.”
It’s easy readers. Gossip is like a cancer in our churches, but it is also quite treatable and curable.
Just Squash it