The Lord has been putting words into my heart for some time now regarding gossip. I’ve personally always had disgust for gossip, yet, at times, found myself in the midst of it and participating in it.
Recently, as I was lying down to go to sleep, I had the words “Gossiping is being an identity thief” running through my mind. I just prayed for the Lord to give me wisdom and understanding of that, to teach me what He wanted me to know.
Here’s what I feel led to share:
Every time you begin to gossip about someone you are taking a small piece of information about that person and giving it to someone else. It doesn’t matter if that piece of information is true or not, what matters is that it’s not yours to be handing out to all you come in contact with. You are literally stealing someone’s identity. That small piece of information literally changes other peoples’ point of view of that person; it changes how they look at that person, it changes how they treat that person. Being a victim of identity theft/gossip brings so much conflict and pain. That victim now has to fight to get back their identity; fight against the rejection and most of the time, the lies.
Let’s be honest. No one gossips about anything positive or good. It’s always some “juicy” piece of negative information. The part that has always baffled me is the way we never question the validity of the information or the integrity of the person sharing it. We eat it up like we would a free cookie. Why do we do this? Why do we revel in the persecution and degrading of others? Do we think if their sins are being shared and plastered everywhere it will diminish our own; maybe allow ours to be forgotten? Bottom line: it doesn’t matter. Who cares what the motives are? What matters is what you are doing to stop it! You’re not responsible for anyone else. You’re only responsible about what you listen to and what you say. Approach it with this point of view: Do you want all your information out there for others to use? I didn’t think so.
In Proverbs 18:21 it says, “The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.”
Are we using our power for good or evil? Are we eating from the Tree of Life or the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil? I choose Life over Knowledge. I choose to speak life and encouragement into others’ lives. I choose to look past all imperfections because that is what Christ does for me on a daily basis! It all boils down to The Golden Rule: Treat others, as you would like to be treated. How quickly we forget this simple truth!
Life or death? Being an Identity Thief or not? How do you want to be known? I know too many Identity Thieves, but I know more Encouragers and Life-breathers. These are the ones I choose to surround myself with and listen to. Listening to life is so much more fulfilling and life-giving.
It’s time to make your choice.