“Shhhh… She’s coming.”
“So?! If we’re going to speak, at least we should say it to her face!”
………. is what I should have said.
But you know us humans. We’re awesome like that and decide to do things in secrecy. We love to speak about other people’s problems so that we could feel better about ourselves. I thought girls were bad about this (and they are… not diminishing it at all), but I found out that guys are not so innocent, either.
There are several categories of gossipers:
- The Evil Gossiper: these entities love to gossip to bring other people down. They were born to tear the victim up and to make their reputation like a mound of unflushed toilets in our men’s dorms. No remorse.
- The Make-Myself-Feel-Better Gossiper: I’ve already mentioned them. Exalt themselves by bringing others down.
- The Holy Gossiper: This is a popular one amongst Christians. The Holy Gossipers talk about other Christians and how terrible they are- as if they could smell a tinge of smoke from the fires of hell emanating from the victims already. And then they start feeling bad about the way they’re talking about them and decide to redeem themselves by conversing about how they should start making them into better people.
You know what I’m talking about. We’ve all been there, done that. I’ve pretty much been at least once in each category. But I guess my favorite title has been the third. A friend would argue, “But Danny, I talk to my friends about these things so that I could help X and Y how to cope with A to Z. Certainly there’s nothing wrong with that, right?”
Well. I think my answer is two-fold:
- Are you truly doing this out of pure, untainted LOVE-or are you pretending to love with some darker, ulterior motives?
- Also, would this person like for you to talk about his/her business to another person without permission? Do you have enough RESPECT for this person to grant them privacy of personal affairs?
All in all, it comes down to true devotion and love. It’s hard to discern what gossip is and what isn’t. King Solomon said,
Proverbs 26:20-22 For lack of wood the fire goes out, and where there is no whisperer, quarreling ceases. As charcoal to hot embers and wood to fire, so is a quarrelsome man for kindling strife. The words of a whisperer are like delicious morsels; they go down into the inner parts of the body.
Seems pretty obvious, eh? Don’t be that guy: the Whisperer. Mold loves to grow in the dark.