“Amazing Grace for our Destructive Gossip” by Katie Taylor
“Because the human heart is driven by self-justification, gossip is almost irresistible.” Tim Keller
I am guessing that you, like me, have experienced being on both the giving and receiving end of gossip.
It’s a tough one. We can talk up a storm, but we don’t often talk about the sin of gossip. I think we can see it as a “smaller” sin and not armor up against it like we do the “bigger” ones.
But gossip is just a few commas away from murder in the list of sins that exchange the truth of God for a lie in Romans 1.
When I have participated in gossip, the crazy thing is, it has appeared like a way to unite people who are trying to see eye to eye. But it’s just the opposite. It leaves a wake of division beyond what our eyes can even see.
“The tongue has the power of life and death.” (Proverbs 18:21)
God cares deeply about words. He spoke the world into existence. Words are meant to create, but they can also destroy.
So, what do we do when we mess up with our words?
I have found it’s not about self control or biting my tongue. It’s about my heart. Words are the overflow of what our hearts believe.
When my words fall into the categories of prosecuting someone else or defending myself, I’ve lost sight of the Gospel. On the cross, I was declared innocent. It is the most mind-blowing truth.
And…so were my enemies. The verdict is in. I am free to exit the courtroom.
Doesn’t that just make you exhale?!
When the world is shouting accusation, sometimes we just to need to lean back in to hear that still, small voice. Jesus is the Living Word; He speaks into our hearts and reminds us what’s true.
The truth I have clung to this summer is this:
“But, He gives us more grace.” (James 4:6)
Let those words sink in. We can’t outrun Him, out-sin Him, or out-talk Him. Will we mess up? Yes! But, big sins and little sins, He sees them all the same and took them all the same. He remembers none of them.
Each day we get a blank sheet and a fresh start with our words.
And when gossip makes us feel yucky, we have these two powerful words to say to God and others,
I pray the Living Word would bring each person reading this to the foot of the cross and remind us of that verdict. We don’t have to be the judge; we can trust Him. I pray He would lift our eyes to see who He sees in the mirror. Our tongues have the power to proclaim who we are becoming, and who our enemies are becoming. In Christ, we have the ability to resist division and build unity.
But no matter what comes out of our mouths today, we can rest assured; He still speaks life over us.
And what He says is true.
Now, that’s amazing grace!
Read more from Katie Taylor at thefirstdayofspring.net