The Words of the Hill Family
I hear much more than I say. While often I wish I hadn't heard the "news" I can choose not to repeat it. Like a chain letter, I can choose not to burden someone else with it.
As I prepare for FOUNDATION DAY rumors and gossip swirl all the more prevalent...
When I was new to the Unification Church life, Pres. Neil Solonen hosted frequent rumor control meetings. He said it was to prevent gossip. Further he said that if anyone had a concern or grievance to share it with their mentor or able figure. If the issue was not resolved the next step was to respectfully discuss the concern with the next higher responsible mentor or able figure, and repeat this process until the matter was resolved. Peer to peer or horizontal sharing would rarely resolve any issue. It often created confusion, cynicism and pessimism. It was worse than doing nothing. This was gossip.
The idea of following a hierarchical path to constructive resolution of problems is not new. The Old and New Testaments admonish against gossip. The reasoning is sound.
As in any group of imperfect folks, mistakes (sins) are committed. If I crash and burn, my restoration path is between me, my conscience, any injured party and Heavenly Parents. If someone else falls short, and I come to hear of it, I can pursue a vertical solution or I can gossip about it.
Please, please take this to heart with regards to social media. (Facebook) For me to confess my sins helps me set things right. Confessing another's sins doesn't fix much. Jesus warned me to work on the log in my eye first. I have lots of logs to work on.
Please don't air another person's dirty laundry, especially if you haven't exhausted the constructive vertical path to resolution first. I try to begin with prayer. I ask to know what to do. I pray for the "rumored" person. I pray to check my own heart...
Is love and concern my motive? What does Godly compassion call for?
Proverbs 26:20 -- Without wood a fire goes out; without gossip a quarrel dies down.
Leviticus 19:16 -- "Do not go about spreading slander among your people. "Do not do anything that endangers your neighbor's life. I am the Lord."
James 3: 8-9 -- But the human tongue can be tamed by no man. It is a restless (undisciplined, irreconcilable) evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless the Lord and Father, and with it we curse men who were made in God's likeness!
Philippians 4:8 -- Do not speak against one another, brethren. He who speaks against a brother, or judges his brother, speaks against the law, and judges the law; but if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law, but a judge of it.
I would rather forgive so I might be forgiven.
I need Thee, O Lord, for a curb on my tongue; when I am tempted to making carping criticisms and cruel judgements, keep me from speaking barbed words that hurt, and in which I find perverted satisfaction. Keep me from unkind words and from unkind silences. Restrain my judgements. Make my criticisms kind, generous, and constructive. Make me sweet inside, that I may be gentle with other people, gentle in the things I say, kind in what I do. Create in me that warmth of mercy that shall enable others to find Thy strength for their weakness, Thy peace for their strife, Thy joy for their sorrow, Thy love for their hatred, Thy compassion for their weakness. In thine own strong name, I pray. Amen.
Perhaps we have been guilty of speaking against someone and have not realized how it may have hurt them. Then when someone speaks against us, we suddenly realize how deeply such words hurt, and we become sensitive to what we have done.
Biography and Devotionals
More churches have been destroyed by the accuser of the brethren and its faultfinding than by either immorality or misuse of church funds. So prevalent is this influence in our society that, among many, faultfinding has been elevated to the status of a "ministry"!
Ministries of Francis Frangipane
Samson slew 1,000 Philistines with the jawbone of an ass. I have destroyed as many relationships with the same weapon.