by: Cris Corzine-McCloskey
I overheard some gossip the other day. I wasn’t sitting with the women, but I was too close to avoid hearing. As soon as they started, I could feel the air crackle with their venomous words. I wanted to run, but before I could escape, their words went into my ears and wrapped around my brain, choking the happy out of me.
Driving home, I was sickened by what had happened. But I was equally sickened over the times I have gossiped and slandered. We have all been guilty of word vomit. But why?
The Book of James tells us, “People can tame all kinds of animals, but no one can tame the tongue. It is restless and evil, full of deadly poison. Sometimes it praises God, and sometimes it curses those who have been made in the image of God.” Maybe we have venomous tongues because our ancestors ate poisoned fruit.
With one explosive statement, “Let there be light,” God began to create the world we live in. Then he fashioned us in His image and told us to rule and subdue the planet. If we were created in the image of God, how do you think we were supposed to accomplish that task?
Once we ate tainted fruit, we gained the ability to judge things as good or evil, and boy, do we ever like to talk about the “evil.” If something displeases us, we do not hesitate to talk about it. Truthfully, we don’t give much air time to the things we deem “good.” But we love fault-finding, criticizing, judging, and verbalizing our fears.
The problem is, we are destined to use the words of our mouth to mold the world we live in. That power has not changed just because we blew it in the Garden. Poisoned fruit, poisoned tongue, poisoned world.
As a therapist, I can attest to what a difficult time people have overcoming the words that craft their lives. Words from critical parents and schoolyard bullies can wreck someone’s fragile self-image. Fearful words are just as damaging. The negativity that comes out of our mouths shapes the way our children think and speak, so the cycle continues. Once we reach adulthood, we are prolific with our poisoned tongue, and we never consider the damage we are doing.
If you want to wreck your home life, start fault-finding and criticizing. If you desire to ruin your work atmosphere, complain. If you want to destroy your church from the inside out, gossip. See, you are more powerful than you know. But the world you helped create then becomes the world you have to live in.
What kind of world do you want to live in? One full of negativity and malice, or one full of life and peace? I think the answer to that question is a no-brainer. Now, use your super-power for the good, and start speaking words full of love and praise for God. Then soak up the atmosphere of Heaven being released into the world you are creating.