“Rumors are dainty morsels that sink deep into one’s heart.” Proverbs 18:8 NLT
“How did that get in there?” Have you ever asked that question? We usually ask it when we find something with either an unknown origin or in an unexpected place. Maybe it is a lost item found in an uncommon location, a PowerPoint slide that doesn’t belong, a splinter in your hand that has surprisingly appeared. “How did that get in there”, is a legitimate question when the origin is a mystery.
Sometimes we might find ourselves uttering a different statement, not of mystery, but one of regret. “I wish that wasn’t in me.” Something external that you regret having in you. Maybe you swallowed the wrong pill, consumed something that you later discovered was bad, or were exposed to some kind of illness. Something was in you and you had to wait it out to see what would happen. “I wish that wasn’t in me”, the waiting can be difficult, but most often the food or drug will pass. Regrettable, perhaps preventable, but it will pass.
Rumors (or gossip) are different. They are also regrettable, and preventable, but they do not pass. They become a part of us. Rumors are those gossip conversations that draw us in. Why is that? Maybe it is a sense of knowing, of being included, or maybe we think it is somewhat amusing. The Proverb says that rumors are like a dainty morsel that we willingly consume. When I think of a “dainty morsel” I think of the small cookies of treats that might be served with tea. Something that might taste good, be tempting to eat, but have no real nutritious value. This passage says that rumors are like that, tempting, but not valuable. And the writer says that they go deep into ones heart. They become a part of you with a degree of permanence. Rumors affect us, they draw us in, and….they aren’t good for us. The Amplified Bible describes the subject verse in this way:
“The words of a whisperer (gossip) are like dainty morsels [to be greedily eaten]; They go down into the innermost chambers of the body [to be remembered and mused upon].” Proverbs 18:8 AMP
When it comes to rumors you will likely come to the point that you say. “I wish that wasn’t in me.” But unlike foods that will pass through, you cannot remove it.
We might ask the same question that we started with: “How did that get in there?” The answer is that you let it in. In fact you enthusiastically consumed it. And now regretfully it is a part of you. Instead of asking “how did that get in there,” or stating “I wish it wasn’t in me,” stay firm in your resolve by stating: I am not letting it in. There may not be a cure for rumors that have settled in your heart, but there is an obvious prevention. Don’t let them in.
The damage of rumors is clear, but thankfully the damage is avoidable through prevention. This week don’t listen to, spread, or originate rumors. Be a truth teller.
In His Hands,