This was written by Greg Laurie (www.harvest.org) a couple of years ago and I copied and kept it. Today I came across it in my computer and was reminded WHY I copied it! I couldn't help but share it with you...I think we've all been victims of gossip or maybe even been the "gossiper" at some point. That's why I'm pretty sure you will be challenged and inspired by this message filled with wisdom and correction....
J. Vernon McGee used to say, "The only exercise some Christians get is running down others and jumping to conclusions."
Slander and gossip are sins that, unfortunately, are far too common in the church today. How many times have rumors been spread that are based on information that simply is not factual, because a person did not take the time to look into it? The Bible says, "He who answers a matter before he hears it, it is folly and shame to him" (Proverbs 18:13).
Gossip and slander are far easier to dish out than they are to take, aren't they? Has someone ever gossiped about you? Has something ever been said about you that simply was not true?
Proverbs 18:8 says, "The words of a talebearer are like tasty trifles, and they go down into the inmost body." Gossip is like that. "Did you hear about this?" someone might say. So we take that tasty little trifle of information. We may swallow it easily, but in the end, it is like a wound. It hurts other people, and it can hurt us.So when we hear gossip or slander, what should we do?
Here is a little acronym that we need to remember: THINK. Is it true? If it is not true, then don't repeat it. Will it help? Is it inspiring? Is it necessary? Is it kind?"Well Greg," you might be thinking, "If I applied that principle all the time, there would be a lot of things I wouldn't say." Good. Then don't say them. You will be better for it. And so will many other people.