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 HOPE CHRISTIAN ACADEMY, Inc. 
 
                                              “…but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; 
                                                                          
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.”  ~ Isaiah 40:29-31 

Too Busy to Gossip

Debe Haller - December 2006

Titus 2:3 says that older women “are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good…”   So why does Paul address the older women to not gossip?  Perhaps the younger women should be simply way too busy for such use of their time.

 

I learned this lesson as a young wife and mother along with other young women who sat under Norm Wakefield’s teaching at Coast Community Church in the 1990s. 

 

Upon hearing the beginning of an inappropriate comment about another, a few of us began to whimsically suggest to the potential gossiper, “Maybe you are not busy enough.”  It was a friendly, agreed upon reminder to watch our speech.

 

My preferred definition of gossip is “sharing detrimental information about some person with those not a part of the problem or solution.”   When someone wants to tell you information about anyone else ask yourself: "Do I need to hear this - or - do I just want to know?   We women have such an attraction to interesting information about others.  

 

While I am eager to hear suggestions from our members on improving our service or if there is a problem, I have zero tolerance for anyone giving bad reports on another member or stirring up discontent amongst the membership.

 

The school board, care group leaders, and staff at Hope are all trained on procedures to handle gossip and criticism.  Recently I commissioned them all as mandatory reporters.  It is their responsibility to report gossip, criticism, and discontent that is potentially detrimental to the welfare and integrity of our members as individuals as well as a collective group.   Throughout the years our board and staff have kept difficult situations confidential and prayerfully waited until the Lord faithfully brought resolution.  It is expected that staff will maintain that confidentiality even when no longer on staff.  

 

Avoid listening to anything resembling gossip and direct the person to the proper jurisdiction who can offer the needed solution.  Or when appropriate, direct the one desiring to tell you about a problem back to the person with whom they have the problem so they may work it out.  

 

Do not give negative reports about your husband or children.  Do not listen to bad reports about anyone else’s husband or children.   When I was a young woman I began to say something, that at the time I thought was innocent although a complaint, about my husband.  My friend interrupted me saying, “Don’t go there. It is too easy for me to go there with you.”  I stopped.  I also gained respect for her bold willingness to stop me for my sake as well as for the sake of avoiding her own temptation.

 

We women are clever creatures when it comes to gossip.  Therefore, do not share information about another even under the guise of seeking prayer.  God does not give grace to third parties.  God heals people, relationships, circumstances, hurt feelings and misunderstandings between the persons involved.  The third party person ends up unable to forgive or forget information that was given to her inappropriately.  Use difficult times to demonstrate your commitment to God and to those whom you share membership at Hope.  When you are tempted to “share” or listen to bad reports. trust God more fully and take your concerns to Him asking for wise counsel.

                   

Tempted to gossip?  You should be too busy caring for your family and homeschooling.  Get busy!  .

 


Hope Christian Academy, 16478 Beach Blvd. #394, Westminster, California 92683
Phone (714) 373-HOPE <4673>   Fax (714) 589-2766
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