The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.
In Proverbs, it talks about the wickedness of our tongues and the harm they can cause. But we’re given guidance on how we should speak, in Ephesians 4:29, “…but only such as is good for building up.” When we share lies or slander about others, I’m sure we can agree, on a general level, that to be wrong. But what about truths? Is it wrong to speak true things about others behind their back?
As pointed out by my pastor during one series, gossip is the spreading of truths, if it was something else, it would be lying or deception. So, to use his example, gossip can come in the form of something that seems like a spiritual request just as easily as something shared at a lunch table. Spreading, discussing, or sharing things about another person that may affect how others view them, put them down, hurt their reputation, or they did not want to be shared; even speculation, that’s what I consider gossip.
According to Google, the definition of gossip is the casual or unconstrained conversation or reports about other people, typically involving details that are not confirmed as being true.
What sticks out to me is the word “unrestrained” as though the speech is not premeditated, thought through, or not needing any effort. It’s an “easy” or “casual” form of talking. My life the past week has brought me to this thought of effort vs. destruction. It takes so long to create something beautiful, strong, withstanding; it takes patience and hard work. But destruction? We can destroy things so quickly; almost thoughtlessly if we must. A child must grow inside the mother for nine months, while a life can be lost in a moment. A plant can take years to produce fruit, but it takes nothing to pick it or chop it down.
Just how finding the right words to say, or building the trust of someone can take a long time to grow strong, one distorted, hateful conversation can ruin that relationship. Our impulsiveness in speech and action destroys many things though, not just relationships. It can ruin your reputation and theirs, lower your
Our impulsiveness in speech and action destroys many things though, not just relationships. It can ruin your reputation and theirs, lower your self-standards, ruin their trust in other relationships, take away their confidence, even turn them away from wanting to know Christ.
But building up? Working hard and thinking through your words? That can produce trust, friendship, love, confidence, opportunities, even show others an example of how Christ builds us up.
So, what I want to emphasize to you, Crowned Beauty, don’t be destructive with carelessness but allow your words to show the Christ-like love we are to display in all things we do. Allow your words to reflect what we are called to represent and be in Galatians 5:22-23.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.