We all know that gossip is wrong, and it is often preached on, but the Lord has really laid on my heart the verse Matthew 12:36. "But I say unto you, that every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment." I wonder how often we say things idly without thinking first. Our family likes to have fun and joke around, but sometimes the joking becomes overly silly and I just wonder how the Lord looks on that. There are even times that the joking becomes disrespectful. You know like a brother or sister responding to an older brother or sister with sarcasm or disrespect and they do not have the correct tone, or step over the line in what is said. This doesn't just occur with children though, adults are just as guilty.
How often have you been around adults and the joking becomes inappropriate in a sense of things being said that are just to be funny, yet we never would say them in a serious manner. Have you ever sat around joking and making fun of the way some one looked or acted? Would you walk over and say it directly to them? It is easy for things to go further than they should when a group is together and starts goofing around. Yes, even our family has done this, but is it an idle word that will be judged? Yes, most likely it will. Or maybe you have jokingly responded to your spouse in a manner, tone or with words you never would if you were serious. And if you say them in all seriousness that is wrong also! But will the Lord judge us for that? Most definitely. The verse says every idle word.
What about when you correct your children? Do you ever say things like : "How could you be so stupid? That was the dumbest thing you could ever do! Can't you ever be careful? Timmy would never do that." Now I know and you know, you don't really mean that, but does your child? Are your idle words spoken in anger or frustration something that needs to be dealt with?
Now, I am not saying you can't have fun, but when does the fun step over the line? It may be a little different for each person, but have you ever taken time to consider this? I am, much more than I ever had before and I hope this will encourage you to think about this also. Yes, it is fine to joke, and perhaps your family will have different standards than another family, but do take time to explain to your children what is allowed, and what is not. Be sure they understand that even idle words are important to the Lord. Here are just a few points to consider:
1. Is what I said disrespectful?
2. Is what I said making fun of someone, whether they are present or not?
3. Is this something I would repeat to that persons face?
4. Am I teaching my children to be disrespectful?
5. Is what I said going to hurt someone's feeling?
6. Is this something I would say if I was not overtired or stressed?
7. Am I hanging around someone who causes me to say things I normally would not?
8. Is what I am saying really necessary?
Hope this helps! Until next time.