My first year of church planting I started a new, full-time job, in a new city, with a new daughter, in a new church. Guess which one got the least attention? Family. As all these new things filled our lives, they began to crowd conversation with my wife. What was once natural—inquiring about my wife’s hopes, fears, and joys—became unnatural, even absent from our conversation. She patiently continued to ask how I was doing, but I was “working for the church while my family died.”
How do you know if you’re gossiping? The Apostle Paul warned young Timothy, a church leader, to curb the gossip that was happening from “house to house.” Unfortunately, we don’t spend the same amount of time in one another’s homes as the early church did, but that doesn’t mean we lack the means for gossip. Today, gossip lurks on Facebook, in emails, over phone calls, through text messages, and good old-fashioned face-to-face. Over the course of this series, we will look at the three faces of gossip: complainer, leaker, and meddler – and how Jesus speaks to each
Counseling might not be your gift, but it is your responsibility. It’s easy to put it off on the “professionals”, but we’re all called to counsel one another. In fact, we are always counseling, offering advice and direction to one another. The question is whether or not we are offering good counsel! Good counseling is discipling others with gospel wisdom in the full range of human thinking, feeling, and behaving. So how do we do that?