Quiet and common notions...shared here...with you! Of life ~ our hearts and our home.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

That Fine Gray Line {a repost!}

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Keep in mind...this is a repost! with a few minor revisions..

Recently, I received a weighty email from a good friend of mine.  We don't talk often, but enough to call it keeping in touch.

I say weighty because within this email was a question, among brief sketchy details, about a quandary she was in.  She wondered if I could use a few adjectives to describe someone else- "to help her better understand"...this particular person.

It was a simple enough question, and the email was laced with a complete "understanding", that  if I didn't want to reply, it'd be okay.  I could tell my friend was, at best, bothered and wrestling.  Yet...

I was flattered - that she would want my opinion!  I just so happen to know this other person, too... so my response could have easily weighed-in to the dilemma my friend was having.

BUT.  

I smelled the gray area.  The fine line... that is ALWAYS, ALWAYS present within and among women (all of mankind, really).  And sadly, more often than not, among the Christian circles at large.

I remember many years ago...making a conscious effort to guard myself against the sin of gossip, (I knowingly have failed; many, many times over) but, this conscious thought, quickly, came to mind...as I read my friends email again and again, wondering how I should appropriately respond.

I let it go for a day or two to ponder and to pray.  By the way, I asked my friend if I could share this as an illustration.  She hesitantly said yes!...hoping that, perhaps, it would encourage someone else.

My husband has been so helpful for me - with this fine gray line.  I am one who so quickly will let hear-say get to me.  I want or feel the need to talk about it to others to "figure out" if what I've heard is really true... sometimes it's been to the point of nearly destroying relationships.  Which is terrible.

Other times, I have been the bouncing board, the sponge, and/or the basket... all ears to absorb the "shocking news", soak it all up, or to gather enough information ...  just enough... to give my "humble opinion", when an opportunity arrives to do so.


Here is how and what my husband has brought to the table of our marriage relationship... which, again, has been so helpful to me. It puts me in my place and the wheels of verbal injury to a screeching halt.
I'll share it with you - too.  Maybe it will be a blessing to someone else, here today.

He'll stop me in mid-sentence with:

1. Did I (do something to) cause it?
2. Am I (personally) involved?
3. Can I "fix" it?

If not... (meaning, by saying no to all three areas)... then don't talk to me about it.  Period.  End of story.

Scott also likes to say; "Control the things I can, and the things I cannot control... than control my reaction to those things".

I think the devil loves to have a hay-day with that ever-so-fine-line.   But, I'm encouraged with Scripture which helps remind:   Greater is HE that is in us, than he that is in the world. (1 John 4:4-6)  

Amen??

***
Your thoughts:  What do you choose to do with the fine, gray line of gossip?
What if it sincerely was meant as a prayer request; a need for your "humble opinion"; or, a plea for advice when bottom line it really is true-blue gossip?  How do you discern?

Isn't life hard, sometimes?

I'm asking myself these same questions..

4 comments:

  1. My hubby's name is Scott too.....lol Isn't it great how our husbands can bring such clear perspective to a situation? As women we tend to make things much worse than they are....I Love how God knew man needed woman and woman needed man...:) After many years in the ministry...working in addiction and life controlling issues with men and women...I have found some individuals can make a mountain out of a mole hill..or are always causing drama with their tongue.. I tend to just STOP gossip in its track..Call it for what it is and move on.. Most people are looking for someone to be on their side...How sad that we want to "talk" someone down to make our opinion or cause seem right... It seems in the church women will so often use gossip as a prayer request...I hate that...Just stop it! ....approaching these matters with truth and grace is a must.....Blessings!

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    1. lol! Scott. Scott is the name..

      ***
      I appreciate your wisdom and encouragement here. I totally agree with you and realize afresh that though this ALL is my desire to be in the refrain... I still can struggle and gently need(ed) this reminder for myself. I kind of think it's why I reposted it...

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  2. I learned early on in life to ask myself this question: "Is what I am going to do (or say) something that I wouldn't mind being splattered on the front page of the newspaper the next day ?" It has served me well as a good measuring device in the grey areas. I also ask myself, "Would Jesus be pleased if He were to read that same newspaper headline ?"
    LOVE YOU, Bev!

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    1. I think I remember you saying this Mitz... back in the day! Oh, remember the good ole days? There was many the day where I oft times needed to make a conscience effort to either excuse myself from the conversation or turn a deaf ear...

      It's hard to do it!! I love your perspective... and question, that you ask of yourself.

      Love you, too! my friend! Miss you..

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