'Pay no attention to those things that do not concern you'.
I read this the other day. Certainly, this is a tidbit of very good and wise advice. A whole load of trouble could be avoided, possibly even averted altogether, if we would follow this adage. I mean, don't we all have plenty of our own business to attend to? Why do we insist on persistently meddling in the affairs of others?
If you're like me at all, you know that it's very hard to ignore some of the things going on around you. Even if they don't affect you directly, they affect you indirectly. You don't set out in the morning to meddle in the concerns of others---yet, by day's end, you've found yourself caught up in some. Your co-worker relates the events of her weekend. Your children relate to you a few disturbing tidbits concerning their friends and acqaintances at school. Your husband relays the info that his colleague was arrested.
You turn on the news and learn of all the local news of the day. The local news is followed by the national news. On and on it goes. All these things you hear that don't affect you personally, things you shouldn't pay attention to because they really aren't any of your business.
Or do they? Where exactly is the line drawn between what really concerns you and where you step over into another's business? Especially as a Christian?
Certainly, you will have many conversations with people, read many newspapers, hear many newscasts. You will, and you know this is true, forever meddle in your children's business. The current situations in other countries and just down the block, do concern you.
You cannot live your life under a rock. Make sure that you are attending to your own concerns. Make sure that as you converse with peers that your conversation isn't spilling over into plain old gossip. Make sure that when you venture into unfamiliar territory--into areas that you should not be in but are because someone you care about is--that you are in the right Spirit. This is the Spirit of edification, warning, true concern.
'Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof'. So true. God doesn't give us more than we can handle. But He does give each one of us more than enough that we must handle ourselves.
Don't be a busybody. Don't meddle. Don't engage in pointless and mean gossip. Pray through all the situations that are presented to you in any given day, and give to God the ones that you have no control over. A good rule of thumb to follow is to ask yourself, "Does this really concern me? Do I have the right or the actual need to get involved in this? Or am I just curious to hear the rest of the story? Do I need to be the sounding board for this person at this moment in order to help them or do I really just want to know all the 'shocking' details? Can I feel God leading me onto this path somehow?" I think we all have that built in sensor that will tell us where we might be crossing over out of our own territory.
This world might be a calmer place if we could all keep sight of our placement in it. If we could simply go about our own business without feeling the need to interfere in everyone else's.
Lord, I ask you this day to remind me of what my place is, and what my business for the day should be. Amen
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Make sure that when you venture into unfamiliar territory--into areas that you should not be in but are because someone you care about is--that you are in the right Spirit. Great article and great advice full of wisdom. Thomas
If I critique this, would I be concerning myself with the business of another? **smirk** I've learned that if I can pray about those things that others say and I can say to my Father exactly what I said to them, I'm more apt to be on safe ground. It took decades to learn this and I need to be reminded, and you did that. As always, a good reminder that is well said.