“Imagine the liberty of not having to worry about someone discovering we broke a confidence or talked unkindly behind her back. God’s way is always the path of freedom.” Beth Moore in Believing God
Once in awhile, we have to remind our daughters that certain conversations are for family consumption only. For example, I want my girls to learn never to embarrass each other publicly (at least not on purpose!) by sharing a story of something that happened at home or in private that would be less than flattering. As sisters, they have a special relationship that should be built on kindness and trust.
This applies to their friendships as well. How wonderful if they could learn at these ages the importance of not betraying a confidence. We’re reminding each other that when a close friend tells you about that
certain boy she likes, you don’t share that information with anyone else
without her permission. If she asks advice about a problem she’s facing, don’t repeat those conversations to classmates.
Then there’s the old adage to not say behind some one’s back what you wouldn’t say to their face. Having the courage to walk away from a group of girls when a gossip session starts may not be easy, but it’s for the best.
I know I’d admit that this is not just a tween/teen girl problem – it can certainly be a problem for adult women like me, too! If my words are kind, I won’t be talking negatively about other moms or women I know. We probably all struggle with controlling our tongue at one time or another, so I need to be reminded of these truths as much as my daughters do.
When our words are kind and we speak truth in a positive way, there is, as Beth’s quote says, freedom. There’s no worry that what we said will get back to another person, no guilt when we see that friend we gossiped about face to face, no embarrassment if a conversation gets repeated.
When we face the temptation to gossip or talk badly about someone else, let’s ask God to “Set a watch, O LORD, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips.” (Psalm 141:3)