The Bible has plenty to say about minding your own business & gossiping. In the Amplified Bible, 1 Peter 4:15 says, “Make sure that none of you suffers as a murderer, or a thief, or any sort of criminal [in response to persecution], or as a troublesome meddler interfering in the affairs of others;” 1 Thessalonians 4:11 says, “and to make it your ambition to live quietly and peacefully, and to mind your own affairs and work with your hands, just as we directed you.” Leviticus 19:16 says, “You shall not go around as a gossip among your people, and you are not to act against the life of your neighbor [with slander or false testimony]; I am the Lord.” Proverbs 20:19 says, “He who goes about as a gossip reveals secrets; Therefore do not associate with a gossip [who talks freely or flatters].”
Yet in spite of these Scriptures being very clear, many people have no problem keeping track of others, & talking badly about what they learn while snooping into other’s business. In fact, some even act like anyone who is bothered if someone does this to them is the one that has a problem, not the other person.
Some time back, I decided to separate myself from every single abusive, awful person in my life & those who associate with them. I blocked all means of access such as phone numbers, emails & social media. I made one mistake. I forgot to block the husband of one of these people. As a result, I learned that his social media profile has been used to snoop on mine. I doubt he would do this, so it’s a safe assumption his wife does the snooping using his profile.
This may not sound like a big deal to most people, but to me, it is. This person lost all rights to any access whatsoever to my life by how she has chosen to treat me. Plus, I have no doubt she discusses her findings with someone close to her who is just as hateful as she is. I feel very angry & violated!
This type of behavior is so common & is rarely thought of badly. It seems to be socially acceptable to keep tabs on people on social media in particular. And honestly, who hasn’t looked up someone, maybe an ex boyfriend or girlfriend that you’ve thought about frequently since you broke up five years ago, then told your best friend what you found out? I think that is pretty normal & that isn’t what I’m referring to. I’m referring to those people who routinely check out someone’s social media or if they see them at the local grocery store, follow them around & then tell other people what they learned. That is the behavior I’m addressing & find so disturbing.
This sort of behavior says someone is very envious. They see someone as better than them somehow. Maybe they think this person is more attractive, talented or successful than they are. Rather than act like a mature adult & focus on improving themselves, instead they look for reasons to be angry with that other person & to make other people think badly of them.
Acting this way isn’t simply unbecoming & ungodly behavior. It is very typical behavior of narcissists! One of the most common tactics of narcissists, whether the narcissist is overt or covert, is to tear other people down in order to make themselves look & feel better. It can be devastating to the victim of this abusive behavior, which no doubt is why God is so clearly against it as to include Scriptures on the topic in the Bible. Even if it is done by someone not particularly close to you, while it may not be as devastating as it is when it’s done by someone close, it really can be very hurtful & is just wrong!
My hope is that those of you who are reading this today don’t engage in this behavior, but if you do, please consider what I have said & make changes. Whether you mean to cause harm or not, chances are, you are causing someone harm & for no valid reason.