Saturday, June 2, 2012

Believe the Best of Others

1 Corinthians 13:7 - LOVE “bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”

We love to jump to conclusions about others. Being on both sides of this, I am learning to believe the best of people. Assuming the worst can very easily lead to slander.

 An example of something so simple being blown up into the hugest of proportions is when I was seen gathering signatures for a petition.  Someone saw this, and assumed that I was petitioning to have an elder kicked out of the church.  Without asking me what I was actually doing, they started telling people their version.

 This gossip and slander – this lie - spread like wildfire throughout several cities, tainting my reputation, as well as my husband’s.  People warned each other that we were rebellious, did not respect authority, and were not to be trusted...

 What I was really doing was helping someone collect signatures for a petition to be sent to the government on some sort of social issue.  So, yes, I was seen physically collecting signatures, but the worst had been assumed.  And instead of speaking directly to me and asking me what I was actually doing – they caused huge and unnecessary rifts and suspicions among several congregations which carried on for more than 15 years.

All of this went on behind our backs for so long, by the time I learned who had started it all, we were thousands of miles apart with no way to contact them.  Sadly, the vile story which was based on a very innocent action - caused widespread damage.   I have forgiven that person in my heart, and I pray they realize their error;  and that all recipients and participants of the slander will seek truth rather than believe lies. And I sincerely pray that we as Christians vigilantly guard our thoughts about others and our words.