Thursday, February 7, 2013


WMD is an acronym for Weapons of Mass Destruction.  According to Wikipedia a weapon of mass destruction is a weapon or instrument that can kill and bring significant harm to a large number of people. This term - in normal use - describes things like bombs. It is a military term and used in the theater of war.  There are other types of WMD. Gossip is probably the most common WMD known to mankind. Although it does not normally cause physical harm or literally kill people - it may be much more devastating than any military weapon. When people start spreading rumors and stories about another person - all too many lives may be destroyed in the process. Through the process of gossip - rumors - often started by envious and hateful people - gain a life of their own - spreading rapid fire among  total strangers - gaining so much momentum that they become urban legends. Once they reach the status of urban legends - it becomes impossible to stop - peaking in popularity - settling down once a major number of people realize that the story is untrue - only to be picked up and recycled years later. Quite often - in an attempt to make an individual appear better or worse than they really are - an urban legend with be irresponsibly attributed to a completely different person - either elevating  their status if it shows a good characteristic - or destroying an otherwise good reputation.  The original small piece of gossip has now become a WMD - and lives on forever.
When Jesus was challenged by the Pharisees on the issue of not washing food before eating - He replied (Matthew 15:11) that "what goes into a man's mouth does not make him "unclean" - but what comes out of his mouth - that is what makes him "unclean".  In a similar vein - the phrase "the pen is mightier than a sword" - was made popular in 1839 by Edward Bulwer-Lytton in his play "Richelieu - Or the Conspiracy". Both examples show the power of words - both written and spoken - the affect they may have on lives - both good and bad. The lesson for us is that we learn to chose our words wisely - thinking before we speak - rethinking what we write - before we hit the enter key and commit it to he world. Our words need to be the words of Jesus - spoken with conviction - spoken with love - spoken in truth.

Deacon Dale