Friday, March 22, 2013

Gossip: A Contagious Cancer

It's interesting to me that a devil is fighting a cancer. The Tasmanian devil population in Australia is fighting an epidemic of cancer of the face. Biologists think it originated in a female in the 1980s or 1990s when a nerve cell in her face underwent a drastic mutation.

Tasmanian devils fight and bite each other in the face, thus spreading the mutation to the bloodstream by biting off some of the tumor, causing the cancer. This has become an epidemic and is killing off the Tasmanian devil population. They are also saying this type of tumor has "evolved into a parasite, with the ability to spread quickly from one devil to another, killing its victims in a few months." After further research by Australian biologists, it seems the cancer cells camouflage themselves.

Look at the words used: fight, bite, parasite, camouflage, tumor, cancer

It struck me how this is so much like gossip.

Fight. Bite. Parasite.
Galatians 5:15 "But if you bite and devour one another, take care lest you be consumed by one another."

Galatians 5:22-23 "But the fruit of the Spirit is...self-control."

Don't disguise gossip as a prayer request. "Just so you know how to pray..."

I Samuel 16:7b "...but the LORD looks at the heart." God already knows what the prayer request is.

Half-truths (maybe to make the teller feel better about who they are

Embellished truths (to make the story sound better)

Lies (no truth at all)

The cancer, which is contagious, starts when gossip starts. What is the cancer? (Note these all start at the tumor stage.)

The loss of relationships

The loss of jobs

The loss of trust

The loss of reputation

Hurt and pain that seems unbearable

Cancer's outcome many times is death. Gossip causes death of relationships, dreams, hopes, maybe even a future. I've known of gossip to cause emotional death, spiritual death and even physical death.

God tells us not to gossip and by not gossiping, you will truly bless your pastor. Then he won't have to deal with the aftermath of destruction.

Note: I wrote this post earlier this week. This morning I read this post (10 Things I've Learned About Church Drama) by my Twitter friend, Pastor Ron Edmondson. I detect a theme with God this week.

What are some things you've learned about gossip...maybe even the hard way?

Read my previous post: Waste Time With God