A perverse man stirs up dissension, and a gossip separates close friends.
“The Rumor with Furry Feet”
You wouldn’t think Christian people would say bad things about each other. But they do. At Eric and Pammy’s church, some of the kids gossiped a lot. Usually it was silly stuff but sometimes some of the kids acted snooty to some of the other kids in the Sunday School class even though Mrs. Wallace the teacher talked to them a lot about Christian unity and loving each other. Gossiping is not love, that is one thing the kids knew. But it happens.
Then a gossip got started that was really really awful. Pammy heard it from Nicola. Nicola leaned over after Sunday School and whispered, “You know Erin? Well somebody at school saw her with an older boy and…..” she continued to whisper things in Pammy’s ear that just couldn’t be true. Erin was a good girl and the rumor suggested she was being very naughty with a boy. Well Pammy didn’t repeat the details but she told her brother Eric about it and Eric was very worried.
“Erin is one of our closest friends and she loves Jesus with all her heart. This kind of rumor could ruin her reputation and hurt her really bad.” But the rumor kept spreading and soon it got to Erin. The day Pammy saw Nicola whispering in Erin’s ear, it just crushed her inside to see what happened. Erin burst into tears and ran from the Sunday School room and didn’t come back for weeks.
Both Pammy and Eric felt awful about it. But they didn’t say anything even though they both imaged how Erin was feeling all alone at her house thinking everybody thought she was such a sinful girl and she wasn’t. That night Eric had a dream. It was really frightening and he woke up with a gasp and had to sit out in the living room with a glass of water to try to get it out of his head.
“I dreamed about the rumor that hurt Erin last night Pammy.” He told his sister the next day.
“What happened in your dream?” she was dying to know.
“Well we were at church and the kids were all whispering that rumor to each other. Suddenly, the rumor jumped out of the mouth of Nicola and became a monster. It had a huge round body and a tiny little head but huge lips on the front. Its fur was long and full of tangles and dirt and filth because it never cleaned itself. It had legs like a duck with big huge feet like bigfoot has and the feet were covered with nasty black fur and he could run really fast all over spreading himself, the rumor to everybody he could hunt down.” Eric said his eyes wide like he was dreaming it again.
“Then it started chasing kids down and when they couldn’t run fast enough, he jumped on them and fell on them with his big nasty fat lips and put the rumor all over them so they could never get rid of it. Finally it went to Erin and when it got to her, it ate her completely up and she was gone and we never had her in Sunday School again.” He finished. Both Eric and Pammy’s hearts were racing from the dream. While it was a silly monster, the damage the rumor did was so scary because they knew the damage was real.
“We will lose Erin if we don’t do something. We have to tell dad.” Pammy concluded. As soon as she said that, Eric knew she was right. When their dad got home from work, they told him everything. As soon as he heard that Erin had stopped coming to church he called Pammy and Eric’s mom in.
“We can’t let Erin get hurt like this.” He said. “I am sure Erin’s parents don’t know why she won’t go to church.” Then he told Eric and Pammy’s mom to call Erin’s parents and tell them what was going on and that they weren’t going to take it lying down. Eric and Pammy’s pride in their parents just burst from them. Then their dad called Mrs. Wallace and let her in on it. Before the evening came, a plan was in place. The next Sunday Mrs. Wallace confronted the rumor face to face.
“This rumor about Erin is false.” She told the Sunday School class. “You all know Erin is a good girl. Satan uses rumors to destroy the church and if we don’t stop Satan, he is going to destroy someone we love, Erin. We aren’t going to stand for that are we?”
“NO” the kids in Sunday School roared. Mrs. Wallace nodded to Eric and he went out and got Erin.
“The weapon that defeats rumors and the devil is love. We all owe Erin an apology and we need to pray that she forgives us, that we forgive each other and that God keeps us honest and helps all watch out for each other that rumors don’t hurt our brothers and sisters again.”
The prayer ended the rumor and Erin was as happy as ever.
“I had another dream last night.” Eric told his sister the next day.
“About the rumor?” she asked.
“Yep. The rumor with the furry feet walked into our Sunday School class to attack more kids and it was faced with Mrs. Wright leading us all in prayer. It grabbed its chest and dropped dead right there on the spot. Then from its useless body, beautiful flowers started to grow and continued to grow until we couldn’t see the filthy monster at all, just the pretty flowers that grew from its body.”
So their Sunday School class got stronger and grew closer because they knew what to do when God’s enemy tries to hurt someone in the church with a rumor. And now you know too so if you see the rumor with the furry feet, you can kill him and share all the pretty flowers that grow from his stomach with everyone in your class.
The words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to a man’s inmost parts. [Proverbs 26:22]
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