Thursday, November 19, 2009

Sticks and Stones - 2

And Adam Hamilton has this to say:

How can we actually avoid speaking ill of others?  Here's what I do when I am at my best and exercising restraint:

First, I remember the call of Christ to avoid judging and to avoid calling names (Matthew 5:21-22)  My aim is to do Christ's will.  Speaking ill of others does not accomplish that aim. 

Second, I try to search my own heart to see what is behind my need to speak ill of the person.  Usually the motivation will be fear, jealousy, insecurity, or revenge.  I remind myself of the words of Mark Twain, "Among human beings jealousy ranks distinctly as a weakness; a trademark of small minds." 

Third, I make it a point to look for the good in the other and to focus on lifting that up rather than pointing out the person's weaknesses. 

Fourth, I remember the biblical call to humility and remind myself that I may not be seeing the other person the way God sees him or her.  I may not know all the facts.  And I remember the many ways in which I fall short of God's plans.

By the time I've walked through this mental exercise, I find it easier to practice what my mother taught me growing up: If you can't find anything good to say about someone, don't say anything at all. 

Sounds like good advice...

I used to have the following saying taped to my computer monitor.


              hand mouth 

      Plaque can be found at Tumbleweed Pottery

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