What’s the difference between gossip and sharing?

What’s the difference between gossip and sharing?

A Story by Precious Prodigal

March 11, 2014: What’s the difference between gossip and sharing? Please “Share” this new Precious Prodigal Blog Post: http://bit.ly/1lv5egA

What’s the difference between gossip and sharing?
Prov 18:8 “The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.
We’ve been looking at the many ways we offend with our lips, and the list keeps getting longer and longer. We’ve covered the things we say to others and how we say them and the things we say to and about ourselves. The things we say to others are one thing, but what about the things we say about others?
Gossip and slander are cruel even when we say we don’t mean for our words to hurt. Slander involves lying about another person. But even if what we say is true, that alone doesn’t make it right to broadcast it. And our words still have the power to hurt. Proverbs 18:8 says those words are like wounds, and they hurt people in the deepest part of their being.
Before we even begin to look at the ways we gossip, I want to stress that I’m not suggesting we keep secrets. When you love a prodigal, it’s a difficult balancing act because all the diseases of dysfunction thrive and flourish in the dark. If we’re not careful and if we don’t find an outlet to share our pain, the weight of all that pain and all those “secrets” can defeat and crush us. However, we need to have discretion about what we share and about the people with whom we share it.
While I won’t be able to cover all the ways people gossip, a few come quickly to mind. Even those few will take more than one day to adequately cover. Some may or may not sound like gossip, but all of them are destructive. The first and most obvious kind of gossip is simply speaking badly about someone and spreading rumors. Even if the words we say are true, that alone doesn’t give us the right to talk to others about it. James 4:11 says it very clearly: “Speak not evil one of another, brethren.” That kind of gossip usually starts with, “Did you hear about…?” or “Did you know…?”
Sometimes the evil we speak of one another is in the form of assuming something and might start out as, “I haven’t seen ‘So and So’ in church in ages. Do you suppose…?” Because of the work I do, I know a lot of people who are in recovery (AA, Alanon, Celebrate Recovery). You would think that, having been victims of gossip themselves, they would avoid it at all costs. Not even close. They are usually the first to assume someone has relapsed and to tell that to anyone who will listen.
We spiritual types aren’t innocent either. We wouldn’t stoop to gossip, but we might share the sordid details we’ve heard so people can “pray effectively.” Really? Do you think God doesn’t know every single detail? How about just saying, “I have a heart burden for…” and let it go at that? There’s an easy litmus test for whether you have the right to say anything at all. Are you part of the problem or part of the solution? If you can’t say “yes” to either of those, don’t talk about it or listen to those who do. It’s not your story to share.
Challenge for Today: Can you, just for today, take an objective look at the things you “share” and where and with whom you share them?

© 2014 Precious Prodigal

Author's Note

Precious Prodigal
March 11, 2014:
What’s the difference between gossip and sharing?
Please “Share” this new Precious Prodigal Blog Post:

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This is a well written story. Your right, it's hard to tell the difference between the two, and sometimes you don't realize you were gossiping until you've hurt someone.

Posted 7 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

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Added on March 11, 2014
Last Updated on March 11, 2014
Tags: Accountability, adversity, affirmations, Alanon, angels, bail, Believing God, bitterness, blame, brothers, building, burden, circumstances, compassion, complaining, counseling, Desperation, devotions