WE WHO are strong [in our convictions and of robust faith] ought to bear with the failings and the frailties and the tender scruples of the weak; [we ought to help carry the doubts and qualms of others] and not to please ourselves. Romans 15:1
Happy Tuesday! It’s a glorious day in northwest Florida. There is crisp fall chill in the air, but the sun is shining bright. Every Tuesday we try something new. Today, I encourage you to help someone. There are people around us all day long who need help. The smallest gestures can make the biggest difference. So throughout the day, look for someone you can help and follow through.
Are you a gossip? Do you find it hard to keep your mouth shut? Have you ever felt the effects of gossip? Did you know that gossip is a sin? Yes, gossip is a sin. How could we believe otherwise, when we know Jesus taught that the second most important commandment is to love your neighbor as yourself (Matthew 19:19). That means love others as much as you love yourself. Treat others how you would like to be treated, and zip your lip. Leviticus 19:16 tells us that we “shall not go up and down as a dispenser of gossip and scandal among” . . . [our] “people, nor shall” . . . [we secure ourself by false testimony or by silence and] “endanger the life” of our neighbors. The phrase “dispenser of gossip” makes me laugh a little, but it’s true. We have all done it, at least once, and we have all experienced it. Gossiping is very hurtful. I don’t know why it’s so hard to tame the tongue. Often, I think no harm is intended. We are just talking to each other and trying to sort things out. Yesterday, I heard a story about someone at work that made me want to warn and protect the others around me. Fortunately, before I said anything, I stopped. The ones I wanted to protect heard the same information. There was no need for me to say more.
Gossip occurs in families too. It is much easier to promote yourself in the eyes of a loved one, if you are making someone else look bad. Don’t stoop to these levels out of jealousy or any other motive. You are a child of God who is loved. The smallest talk can cause the most pain and disfunction in families. When you stand before God, do you want to see how you hurt people or how you lifted them up with your words?
Join me in lifting others up with words of love and helping the needy. God bless you.