without gossips, conflict calms down.‘ Proverbs 26:20 CEB
Do these three things:
(1) When necessary, confront the gossiper.
If the offender is a Christian, stand on this Scripture: ‘If your fellow believer sins against you, go and tell him in private what he did wrong. If he listens to you, you have helped that person to be your brother or sister again‘ (Matthew 18:15 NCV).
Now your goal in confronting them isn’t to prove them wrong and you right, it’s to bring reconciliation and preserve unity in God’s family.
Watch your tone. ‘…Don’t sin by letting anger control you…‘ (Ephesians 4:26 NLT).
Stick to the facts. Without putting them on the defensive, seek to find a resolution that stops the gossip and repairs the damage.
If they’re willing to acknowledge their part, be ready to forgive. If they’re not, forgive them anyway – for your own sake and God’s sake. And remember, they may continue to be your brother or sister without being your trusted friend!
(2) Don’t let gossip diminish your self-worth.
If your self-worth depends on what others say, you’ll always feel down when you’re put down. Let your self-worth rest on what God’s Word says about you.
Regardless of your imperfections, the Bible says you are ‘…the redeemed of the Lord‘ (Psalm 107:2), ‘...accepted in the beloved‘ (Ephesians 1:6), ‘…the righteousness of God in [Christ]’ (2 Corinthians 5:21). Focus on God’s estimation of you and ‘…build [yourself] up in your most holy faith…‘ (Jude 1:20 NIV) in spite of others’ opinions.
(3) Don’t judge others by rumour-mill reports.
Whether gossip is truth-based or false, its intent is always to ‘destroy’ (John 10:10 NIV). Don’t do Satan’s work for him!
Soul Food: Deut 8-10; Matt 7:1-14; Ps 37:16-24; Pro 11:30-31
Written by Bob & Debby Gass
Monday, 4 May 2015