11:28 a.m. - 2005-04-13
I would like to comment on one thing – there is a scripture verse that has been haunting me lately. Normally I don’t write much about what I’ve been reading or scripture passages that come to mind, but I feel that this particular verse has much to say to the world in general. That passage is Ephesians 4:29. For those of you who don’t know much about the Bible, the book of (or more specifically a letter to) Ephesians is in the New Testament. It is a letter written by the Apostle Paul to the church in Ephesus. This letter as a whole is a letter of encouragement to people who felt unloved and abandoned, and Paul was in prison in Rome when he wrote it. But I digress.
The verse reads, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” (I’ve taken this from the New International Version). Or from the more controversial “Message” – “Watch the way you talk. Let nothing foul or dirty come out of your mouth. Say only what helps, each word a gift.”
This is going to sound a little out there, but don’t you think the world would be a better place if everyone adopted this principle? Thousands of gossips would be out of business. People would smile more often because they felt affirmed by others. Politicians would have giant band-aids across their mouths. And dare I say …. I dare …. there would be a little less meanness in the world.
I somehow doubt this would stem the tide of wars, drug-lords, or evil menaces trying to take over the world. But for just a moment, it gives me the warm fuzzies to think that the world would progress to a nicer place if only we tried to be more conscious of what we said to each other, or about each other.
I sometimes feel that I am the worst offender of these verses. Something I am not proud of. But the fact remains I don’t always speak kindly of others. I don’t always watch my language (although I have drawn very strong lines about words I will not say). I am drawn to gossip like a moth to a flame, and believe me – I have been burned.
We are a society that lives to build up people and then tear them down. We love to support our politicians, but as soon as there is the slightest hint of scandal – we’re down their throats faster than a good beer. And don’t even get me started on how we idolize celebrities. …
What are your thoughts?