On Snow Blowing and Gossiping
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On Snow Blowing and Gossiping

Snow blowing is quite fun.  Shooting snow several feet into the air creates a beautiful sight.  However, you can’t do it without getting it on you.  Either going out the driveway or coming in, one way or the other the wind will catch you and turn you into Frosty the snowman.  It is much like slinging mud on another’s reputation. We deliciously tell a tale about someone but in the telling we ourselves have lost stature.  “A gossip betrays a confidence, but a trustworthy person keeps a secret.”  Proverbs 11:13

Granted it is difficult to keep a juicy bit of information secret.  Like small children we want to walk around saying, “I know a secret.  I know a secret.”  But really there are some things better left unsaid, both for you and for the other.   I grow nervous in church when before someone prays they ask for prayer requests.  Sometimes, and I don’t think for some it is innocent; some will use the occasion to spread a story while pretending to cloak it with Christian care.  It usually goes something like this.  “Please pray for my husband’s brother who was arrested this week for beating his wife.”   Ouch.   We didn’t need to know that.  God knows all about it.  We don’t have to inform Him in the presence of anyone.

Now that I am as old as I am, often I am tempted to write a book about being a pastor.  I could fill it with wonderful stories of care and miscare and trust and betrayed trust.  I would give the characters fake names but people are smart.  They could figure out who I was writing about.  So the book will go unwritten as it should.  Just as God blots out such things so should we.

Written by Roger Bothwell on December 19, 2013

Spring of Life, PO Box 124, St. Helena, CA 94574