Did you hear about…

Did you hear about…

In the mul­ti­tude of words, sin is not lack­ing, But he who restrains his lips is wise.

I’ve noticed that some­times I have such a burn­ing desire to share what’s on my mind about some­thing or some­one who has offended me. I think that if I could just tell some­one about it, that I will feel so much bet­ter and be able to move on. In my heart, I know that this isn’t right, but I *have* to tell some­one or I will just keep stew­ing. Ugh. It never works out that way. I end up feel­ing much worse about the sit­u­a­tion and the rep­u­ta­tion of the per­son I spoke about. I worry that my words will be repeated, and the bur­den I have laid upon the poor soul who I dumped on. Inter­est­ingly, the sit­u­a­tion that I thought would just ease up has mul­ti­plied in my head instead of dis­si­pated, like I had deceived myself into believ­ing it would do. Why is it that we can know what Scrip­ture says about some­thing, but we set out to do it our way instead? Why can’t I remem­ber that the Lord is the One who set­tles mat­ters, and I don’t have to take things into my own hands? Why do I worry about these things and waste time and energy in this unlaw­ful pur­suit, when I could be build­ing the king­dom by min­is­ter­ing to some­one, bless­ing my chil­dren, liv­ing in joy rather than think­ing so much about the per­son who has stepped on my toes? Just who do I think I am anyway?

We see it every­where: on blogs, on TV shows, in movies, in our churches, at social gath­er­ings, on face­book. Peo­ple have this inate desire to talk about peo­ple, about what they have done wrong. But we’ve all done wrong. We’ve all stepped on toes. We’ve all pur­pose­fully and acci­den­tally offended oth­ers. Do we want them to be char­i­ta­ble to us, over­look­ing our gross sins, for­giv­ing us with­out spread­ing gos­sip about us? Of course we do! Well, I know I do. Please, don’t let peo­ple know how wretched I really am. But, we some­how feel that we can step out and shout from the rooftops, or whis­per over a cup of tea, about the injus­tice, rude­ness, and insen­si­tiv­ity of Jane. Or Joe.

I don’t want to be that person.

Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speak­ing deceit.

I was recently con­sid­er­ing the verses in Scrip­ture men­tion­ing that Mary “pon­dered these things in her heart” when refer­ing to all that was hap­pen­ing to her, and what the shep­herds told her con­cern­ing her Son. Would that have been my reac­tion? Pon­der­ing? Per­haps some. But I imag­ine that I would also be want­ing to talk about it, look at it from all angles, dis­cuss it over cof­fee. I mean, this was a majorly big deal. The biggest deal ever in the his­tory of man! And she had the matu­rity, grace, wis­dom to pon­der these things in her heart. Wow. And then I real­ize how utterly depen­dent upon the grace of God I am. For each breath and each word not spoken.

Typ­i­cally, I live my life over­flow­ing with the joy of the Lord. Truly. But when I dwell on the thought about some­one treat­ing me or a loved one in an unlov­ing man­ner, it steals my joy. And when I repeat the offense to some­one else, I find I have dif­fi­culty falling asleep at night. I’m thank­ful for that prick­ing of my con­science. It is a won­der­ful reminder to repent and forgive.

Let your speech always be with grace, sea­soned with salt, so you know how to answer each one.

My prayer is that I would be more godly in my thoughts and words; that I would love more. I don’t think we can love too much. And that peace will rule in my heart. I pray that I will be enabled to over­look offenses, to remem­ber the bless­ings of the same per­son who offended. I pray that my life will mir­ror our Lord’s life more. And that I will stop being so self­ish. Am I alone in this struggle?

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  1. Andrea says:

    Thank you for your thoughts. A good thing to pon­der as I set­tle in for the night.

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