by Sharman J. Monroe
“He who covers and forgives an offense seeks love,
But he who repeats or gossips about a matter separates intimate friends.”
Proverbs 17:9 (AMP)
We see and hear a lot everyday. We see somebody engaging in behavior we think is wrong or somebody tells us something negative about somebody else. You get into an argument with someone. The person you were relying to do something doesn’t. You get offended. You are hurt.
That’s life on a planet inhabited by people who are different from you with different likes and dislikes, different opinions, different desires and so on. Conflict will happen. But we don’t have to talk about all the conflict in our lives or repeat who did what to whom. When we say something negative about someone to another person, we diminish that person’s opinion of the other. Soon that person looks at them negatively and looses respect for them. That person may begin to treat them badly and also say negative things about them. This is not godly behavior (Gal 5:22). When conflict happens with another person, work it out with that person, not in the court of public opinion (Matt 18:15). When you hear something negative about another, unless someone’s safety is at issue, keep it to yourself (Prov. 26:20). Cover each other. Unbeknownst to you, you will be covered in return.
As my mom used to say, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all!”