I. Prayer to enter the Lord’s presence:
Be still for a moment. “Lord, I give the day that is now past to you. It is yours. I give the day that is to come to you; help me to see where you are working and to join you there. Speak to me during these moments. I commit them and myself to you.”
II. Prayer of Confession:
“Lord, you are faithful to forgive me and cleanse me of my sin when I confess it to you. I confess my sin(s) of ______________. Thank you for forgiveness.” (1 John 1:9)
III. Prayer of Thanksgiving:
Choose to be thankful, speak out loud of what God has done.
“Thank you, Father, for _________________. Fill my heart and my mouth with gratitude throughout this day.”
IV. Scripture Reflection
Read: Proverbs Chapter 18
8 A gossip’s words are like choice food
that goes down to one’s innermost being.
The other day, I put on my jeans and they were a bit tighter than the week before. I couldn’t believe it! So I decided that morning that I was gonna lose some weight. I told Patty, “I’m not gonna eat badly today.” And out the door I went. I had a meeting to attend, so I went straight to the meeting, walked into the conference room, and sitting in the middle of the table were several boxes of assorted Krispy Kreme Doughnuts! Oh my, immediately, my mouth began to salivate. You see, those are my favorite doughnuts. In fact, when the kids were young, I would load them in the car and go to Krispy Kreme when the “Hot Light” was on to make sure we’d get five free extra doughnuts to go with the dozen I would buy. Needless to say, I blew my diet that day.
Now you’re probably wondering why I’m starting a devotional off with a story about my love of doughnuts. Well, it’s because it graphically illustrates Proverbs 18:8.
Gossip is described as a choice food, a morsel, or a delicacy. The teacher isn’t saying gossip is good, and it should be something we partake in, it’s just the opposite. You see, ignoring gossip is hard! It’s as hard as saying no to your favorite choice of food or favorite dessert. There is something in us that just wants to hear it. Taking a bite of gossip just creates a taste for more! Just like food being digested in your body, gossip goes down into your innermost parts and is remembered. It’s a terrible thing to do.
We need to stay away from gossip and rumors, nothing good comes from it. Gossip is spread to hurt or bring a person down. A lot of times, people engage in gossip because they want to puff themselves up, so they can feel better about themselves at the expense of others. Oh, they’d never say that’s what they were doing, but it is, because the focus is on themselves and how they wouldn’t have done the same thing. “Did you hear what so-and-so did? Can you believe it? I would never do that.” Even if what is said is true, it turns into gossip when it is spread inappropriately to people who have no business knowing about it.
Yes, gossip can be as irresistible as choice food. It can be hard not to eat it up, but we must resist the urge to partake because once it is eaten, it penetrates deeply into our souls. Stay away from it.
Determine today not to be a gossip—a grumbler. As one commentator puts it, you can resist gossip the same way a determined dieter resists candy—never even open the box. If you don’t nibble on the first bite of gossip, you can’t take the second and the third.
V. Prayer for others:
Pray specifically for the concerns of your life and the lives of others.
VI. Prayer of commitment:
“Lord God, I commit to love you with all my heart and with all my soul and with all my strength and with all my mind and to love my neighbor as myself. Empower me today to love you and others with everything that I am.” (Luke 10:27)
This Week’s Scripture Memory:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
6 in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.