Skip to main content

Not another 'work around'

Have you ever been 'talked about' by others? If you are human and living on this earth, the answer to that question is probably a resounding "yes"! Human beings have a way of finding things in others they want to talk about - rationalize, complain, point fingers - we all do it. Even the best of us find ourselves talking about others from time to time - maybe in a nice way, but maybe not always in the best of ways. Knowing this, isn't it important that we continue to 'refine' the way we speak about each other, allowing God to guide our conversation?

The godless spread lies about me, but I focus my attention on what you are saying; they're bland as a bucket of lard, while I dance to the tune of your revelation. (Psalm 119:69-70)

I once wrote a post about a friend who reported she has had to learn to 'work around' what others have said about her. She found herself in the midst of gossip and as a result, she was 'working around' the mess those words were creating for her life. David was faced with the same challenge - - friends were spreading gossip and lies about him. His response was much the same of my friend's - - he turned to God, listening intently to what God had to say about him and the situation - - not to the hurtful words of those who were speaking those unkind words. He was learning to work AROUND the things in people that just made his life a little less than enjoyable. Confidences don't always seem to remain that way; words are sometimes spoken that may bring a little hurt within our emotions; and we frequently find ourselves in a situation of wanting to say, "Get 'em, God!" I wonder if perhaps we are smack-dab in those circumstances because God is teaching us to work AROUND those things in others!

According to scripture, those who spread rumors have minds that are dull and brutal. There is a certain "dullness" of mind that just becomes apparent in the words they speak. Dullness is really a condition of being without spirit. Maybe it is more of being without the "Spirit" in that area of their life that causes them to speak against others. When we are not being "governed" by the Spirit of God in our words, we are allowing unwholesome gossip, backbiting, and the like to be part of our communication. We have not given that area over to the control of the Holy Spirit. In another sense, this dullness is evident in the lack of "richness" within our conversation. God reminds us often to speak words that "edify", or build each other up, avoiding those words that tear one another down. Those closed-door conversations, secret words in the corners of the office, and the passing comments hidden from public hearing are simply not "building" blocks - they are more like "wrecking balls".

Not only are the words of a gossiper dull, but they are brutal. There is a sense of "cruelness" in what is spoken. In a sense, they are "animal-like", tearing apart another just like a ravenous animal would attack prey. These type of words do nothing but create hurt, deep wounds, and ongoing "soreness" in a relationship. That is why they are so dangerous! David gives us a little insight into "handling" these dull and brutal words as he reminds us to focus our attention elsewhere. Learn to "work around" those things in others that give you reason to talk - not by focusing on them, but by focusing on God in them. All of us have the ability to be just as dull and brutal, but we would want others to extend the same grace in our lives as we are being asked to extend to them. Forgiveness is indeed hard, but it is oh SO very rewarding. There is nothing that confounds someone more than being "deserving" of our anger, but then receiving our grace instead!

I like David's explanation of those that tend toward gossip as if they are like tubs of lard! Ever see a tub of lard? Not so pretty, but also not very easy to get a handle on the contents of that tub! Try holding onto lard and you will find it quite difficult. It takes the shape of whatever it is in contact with because it is really not capable of being "pressed upon" or exposed to the "heat" of an outside force. I am not saying the "gossiper" cannot help but conform to the gossip around them, but they just tend to go with the flow more than they know! It is probably pretty important for us to learn to work AROUND the one that speaks those words of unkindness. They probably deserve your anger, but they will be shut down by your grace! Just sayin!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Your full attention, please

My mother frequently uses the term "Listen to me!" as a way of getting my attention so that I actually stop, pay close attention, and hear out whatever her idea or issue is at the moment. It isn't always at the most convenient moment, nor is it always easy for her to get out whatever it is she wants to share. Yet, it is important enough for her to ask to for me to hear it, so I respond with, "I'm listening, mom", and she begins.  It isn't said in anger or in a moment of disappointment. Rather, these words are usually spoken in a "sing-song" manner, but with very specific intent - they are intended to get me to REALLY listen to what she was saying. Why? Because she knows she has something to say even if it is getting harder for her to say it! She has walked through much already, learned many lessons, and has the advantage of experience on her side, but the disadvantage of advancing age makes it harder and harder for her to actually form those t…

Getting at the heart of it all

Have you ever seen someone so good with their skinning knife they can just peel away the hide of an animal without a rip or tear, no waste of any of the meat just below that skin? I have seen some fishermen able to fillet their catch with such skill not even one bone is found in the fillet. How do they learn this skill? I think it comes to them through practice and with the employment of the right 'tool' to do the job at hand. There is comfort in knowing that God means what he says and his Word will come to pass. His Word is like the scalpel in the skilled hands of a surgeon or the knife in the hands of the skilled hunter. As a nurse, I have seen the skillful use of the scalpel - dissecting away the finest of tissue to protect the healthy tissue and to expose the tissue that has become devitalized by disease or decay. I have also seen the damage done by a "blade" in the hands of one not trained or at all skilled in its use. The difference is beyond description.

God m…

Be a little salt

Ever wonder why Jesus left his disciples with the idea of being 'salt on this earth'? We don't fully appreciate salt these days because we aren't as accustomed to how it was used during the times Jesus spoke those words. We often have to put ourselves into the culture where the words are being recorded in order to fully comprehend the significance of their meaning. In the days of the disciples, salt was a basic "staple" of life. It was that which acted as "preservation" for everything. It also was the main seasoning of the dishes prepared - although there were other spices, salt was a 'staple'. Perhaps we would do well to look at some of the other functions of salt in order to see what Jesus may have meant when he referred to our lives a salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of the earth.

"Let me tell you why you are here. You're here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltin…