“a Lamp to my feet. a Light for my path.” – Psalm 101:5; Proverbs 26:20; Romans 12:3,10

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TODAY’S WORD…

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I will get rid of anyone

who whispers evil things about someone else;

I will not tolerate anyone

who is proud and arrogant.

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– Psalm 101:5

Without wood, a fire goes out;

without gossip, quarreling stops.

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– Proverbs 26:20

Do not think of yourself more highly than you should.

Instead, be modest in your thinking,

and judge yourself according to the amount of faith that God has given you.

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Love one another warmly as Christians,

and be eager to show respect for one another.

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– Romans 12:3,10

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REFLECTION…

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Gossip offends God and is a sin against both God and neighbour.

If you do gossip, pray for forgiveness

and the grace to only speak kind words about others in the future.

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Those who gossip need an audience of people willing to listen.

If you refuse to take part in gossip, then eventually others may follow your example, leaving the gossiper with no one to share the juicy rumours.

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Those who indulge in malicious gossip tend to think of themselves more highly than they should.

Therefore, be modest and judge yourself humbly before God.

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The Lord wants us to love one another warmly as Christians,

and be eager to show respect for one another.

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Sincere Christian love and charity requires that we respect and esteem all others.

HOWEVER, to be able to esteem others

we must be careful that we do not esteem our own selves too much,

nor to be always (and, therefore, arrogantly) sure of ourselves.

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Be modest in your thinking.

We need to be modest and to minimise our big-headed certainty that all we have are virtues.

It is not a bad thing to also look more closely at ourselves and to actually admit our own failings.

When we genuinely do so with all humility,

what then follows is that those defects we would often see in others are minimised.

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Minimising the defects we may see in others and showing respect for one another

includes not engaging in gossip.

Gossip may sometimes appear to be innocent enough,

but it is in fact one of the things that most pollutes what should be a Christian communal spirit.

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QUOTES…

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“Gossip is spread by wicked people;

they stir up trouble and break up friendships.”

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– Proverbs 16:28

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“Talking badly about someone else while they aren’t there to defend themselves

says more about you than the person you’re talking about.”

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– anon

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“It is not enough to avoid speaking ill of others

– we must also prevent people from doing so in our presence,

making it clear, perhaps by our silence, that we do not approve.”

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– Fr Raniero Cantalamessa

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PRAYER…

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Lord Jesus, take away my arrogance

and grant me humility and a caring heart that loves and is gracious to all. Amen.

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