Keep My Mouth Shut!

Keep My Mouth Shut | Texting the Truth | Gossip can be damaging and God wants to help us control the words that come out of our mouths.

Anna
Anna

Argh. I am so mad at myself! I just walked away from a conversation wishing I had NOT said something that I said. #passtheducttape 🙅

Anna
Jessica
Jessica

I’ve been known to suffer from a little FIM (foot-in-mouth) syndrome myself! 👣 😮   What happened?

Jessica
Anna
Anna

We’re all chatting, and all of the sudden my friends are talking (complaining) about a certain person or situation that I know something about. Cue: my temptation to join in!  

Anna
Laura
Laura

Ahh, yes… That is a major temptation!  It’s so darn easy to just talk away! And then before you know it, you’ve said something hurtful.

Laura
Anna
Anna

Exactly! It’s just flying out of my mouth at the speed of light.⚡️

Anna
Jessica
Jessica

I’m guilty of that! 🙋 And I often know I shouldn’t be doing it.  I get a feeling in the pit of my stomach that I know it isn’t right, but the words keep coming anyways.  It’s such an impulsive thing!

Jessica
Laura
Laura

That pit in my stomach is the key.  Listening to that could send me down a whole new road.  I know that when I talk about someone else even in a nice way or like you should pray for this person… it breaks trust with the one I’m talking about.  I might feel good for a moment because I know something about a particular situation that others don’t know.  And my pride is momentarily satisfied, but then what have I done to my friend who confided in me?

Laura
Anna
Anna

Right…that is so true, Laura. Will they think I just share, share, share, about everyone?

Anna
Laura
Laura

Yes!  And I don’t want to be that person!  I don’t want my fleeting emotions to be what leads me in my relationship with other people. I want to be someone people can trust.

Laura
Anna
Anna

Me too. And you know, it’s even harder for me when someone or something comes up that I’m mad or irritated about.

Anna
Jessica
Jessica

Yes!  I may have an issue with holding a grudge or two. 😖  And when that particular person comes up, the negative thoughts flood my head and the words that come out of my mouth follow that.  

Jessica
Anna
Anna

Yes! Flash flood warning! 🌊⛈

Anna
Jessica
Jessica

It’s like I trick myself into thinking if I let those negative thoughts express themselves in words, I’ll feel better about the situation, but in reality it just fuels those negative thoughts and deepens the bitterness.  And sometimes those seeds of bitterness will plant themselves inside of the people I’m gossiping with.  I feel like a terrible person admitting all of this!  I want to build others up, but instead I’m tearing down so many people around me.

Jessica
Anna
Anna

I know. 😔  I think it’s so important to consciously think about building people up with our words, whether in front of them or not. We think what we say when they can’t hear it won’t be harmful, but it still is.

Anna
Laura
Laura

But Jessica, you are not a terrible person because if we’re honest, we all struggle with this from time to time.  But let’s be real–our sin is pretty terrible in those moments. Good thing we have Someone stronger on our side to help us! 💪

Laura
Jessica
Jessica

You’re right!  So how do I stop those negative thoughts in their tracks and KEEP MY MOUTH SHUT?  And better yet, tell my mind to SHUT UP as well??

Jessica
Anna
Anna

I think a good place to start is what Laura just said: calling on God to help us in our tempting situations. The other day, I was heading to meet with someone who I tend to gossip around. Before I went in, I prayed and made the decision that I would stop and think before I said anything. I knew it would be a temptation at some point, but I just wasn’t going to bite.

Anna
Laura
Laura

Wow! That’s cool. I love how you invited God to help you with the temptation before you were even tempted.

Laura
Anna
Anna

And–this is kind-of funny looking back on it now–there were big pauses in the conversation because I was literally stopping my natural thoughts and replacing them with something positive. 😳  (That’s me trying to think of what to say next, LOL!)

Anna
Jessica
Jessica

Great idea! I have found that if my mouth is busy speaking words of love and acceptance (even if I don’t 100% believe the words I’m saying), my mind doesn’t have much room to stew in negativity.

Jessica
Laura
Laura

If we do that, then we are free to focus on the person we are with. Building that person up and building trust between us, without involving anyone not present in the conversation. Even if it is sort of awkward at times.

Laura
Anna
Anna

And it was! Like getting a ball rolling (a HUGE bowling ball) in the other direction, over and over. 🎳  And, it felt like a sacrifice sometimes. Like I was a telling myself not to eat any more junk food today! It’s just bad for me, even if it tastes good in the moment!

 

Anna
Laura
Laura

Haha! Can you pop out from behind a bush with that sign the next time I’m in a gossip situation?

Laura
Anna
Anna

Yes. That’s what friends are for! Although that might be creepy. Just a little.

Anna
Jessica
Jessica

Umm…yeah. But seriously though, I think tapping into God’s strength when this happens is the key. This will get us out of a place of negativity and keep us out of the “gutter”.

Jessica
Laura
Laura

Love that! Lord, keep our conversations out of the gutter! Help us to work hard at building people up, just the way we would want them to do for us if we weren’t around. 💜

Laura

Soaking in the Truth

Scripture to encourage you:

Living Out the Truth

Ideas to try:

  • When you’re tempted to share some information, ask yourself these questions first:
    Is it true?
    Is it necessary?
    Is it beneficial?
    This has stopped me in my tracks so many times!
  • Sometimes bitterness is at the root of it. If you find yourself talking badly about the same person or situation over and over again, you might be holding onto bitterness. Talk to God about it. Ask God to help you forgive this person the way that He has forgiven you.
  • The next time you talk about someone, ask God to help you understand your motive. Are you feeling insecure so talking negatively about someone makes you feel better about yourself?
  • How do we want our kids to respond to gossip? I know if they see me model talking about other people, they will learn to do the same.
  • Remember as you are practicing the art of not gossiping, that you will not be perfect. You’ll have days or conversations that get away from you. The important thing is that you acknowledge that it happened. Take it to God and ask him to keep refining your heart and your self-control on this topic. Tomorrow is a new day!

    {These suggestions are ideas from novice moms. Sometimes our life situations need more. In that case, seeking out professional help is the right call.}



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *