KNOW ANY PEOPLE LIKE THIS?
Someone has written, “The wicked have a need to cause harm; their ‘peace of mind’ depends on it.” Proverbs 4:14-16 elaborates: “Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil men. Avoid it, pass not by it; Turn from it and pass away. For they sleep not except they have done mischief; and their sleep is taken away, unless they cause some to fall.”
Unfortunately, there are people in the workplace, families, even in churches, etc. who thrive on drama and problems real or presumed in which they can embroil themselves and others; people who are most “at home” in a tension-filled atmosphere; who love misery and company in it. Know anybody like this?
The people described above may not actually be “wicked,” but they act wickedly when they think and behave this way. These are those who bring a “wet blanket” wherever they go; they’re “whisperers,” who “sow strife,” “separate chief friends” (Prov. 16:28) and believe in the power of negative thinking—those who’ve been described as “people who make coffee nervous.” Know anybody like this? People like this are toxic to your spiritual, mental and emotional health.
Social contact with some people needs to be avoided altogether; others, depending on circumstances, with whom it needs to be avoided as politely and as much as possible—without any sense of guilt. This is commanded in Scripture by our Creator who knows what’s best for us. (PS. 1:1; Prov. 13:30).
Be kind to, care and pray for toxic-type people. But don’t feel obligated to subject yourself to their toxicity of spirit. Feel obligated not to do this. It’s a matter of your obedience to God and your personal responsibility to yourself and others.