Ever been the victim of vicious gossip? Or, unknowingly got caught in the middle of it? Backbiting, gossip, breaking confidences whether the information is true or false is damaging. It hurts the victim for sure, but it also hurts everyone involved in it too.
Many years ago, I worked for a bank. My boss at the time was the ring leader for spreading gossiping about everyone who worked in our department. She would come into my office everyday to share “the latest gossip“. I was new on the job and so the first few times I didn’t say anything but I was very uncomfortable. It became clear that she wanted to recruit me as part of her gossip group around the office. I knew I would have to say something and the sooner the better.
Being a Christian, I knew what the Bible says about this and I tried to be as polite and kind as I could, but I told her that I don’t like gossip and I would prefer it she would not discuss any more of it with me.
This made her so angry that now I became the next victim. She began spreading rumors and outright lies about me and many times tried to get the head of the department to fire me. Her agenda was to tarnish my reputation.
It was one of the most difficult times of my life. I stayed true to my beliefs and I prayed for her. It was a couple of years of torment going to work everyday. But God was with me. Through all the threats and fear of losing my job, I just kept praying. I needed the job but I need Jesus more.
In the end, she resigned. Sometimes, standing up for God will bring repercussions, maybe even years before retribution comes to pass, but if I had to do it all over again, I wouldn’t change anything.
The mouth is one of, if not the most, dangerous parts of the body. It boasts, brags, loves, hates, lies, speaks truth, prophesies, condemns, kisses, spits, smiles, and frowns.
The Bible is clear about the tongue in James 3:5-10, Paul wrote:
“Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things. See how great a forest a little fire kindles! And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire by hell. For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind. But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so.” (NKJV)
I like this verse 10:
“My brethren, these things ought not to be so.”
It hurts when we use our mouth to spread rumors or even participate in gossip and the person doing it needs to know you won’t put up with it. It’s just as easy to approach the person rather than talk about them behind their back. And it doesn’t matter if the gossip about the person is true or false. The best way to help anyone is to pray for them.
As Christians, we should not want any part of slandering another person. And if you’ve ever be on the receiving end of gossip, you know first hand how hurtful it is when people are talking against you.
I know it’s hard to avoid people who like to gossip when you have to work with or regularly interact with them, but I am living proof that God will stand by you for remaining committed to His principles. He did it for me.