Were I a Democrat, I would seriously consider never sending another email as long as I live. First, Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton found herself under FBI investigation for mishandling emails while Secretary of State; although the FBI has cleared Secretary Clinton, serious questions remain, and I’m confident that we’ll hear about the scandal over and over between now and November. Over the weekend, it was revealed that the Democratic National Committee sent emails back and forth about how to derail the presidential campaign of Senator Bernie Sanders; Debbie Wasserman Shultz has resigned in disgrace as chairwoman of the Democratic Party over the scandal.
But, it’s not just high-profile Democrats who have found themselves in hot water over emails. I know people who have suffered horrible heartache over inappropriate emails. Email can be a very dangerous tool the devil uses successfully.
Because email can be such a problem, I thought I’d write today about proper ways to use email:
Remember email does not disappear.
Unless you’re Hillary Clinton with a private email server, your emails don’t disappear. You can hit the “delete” button, but the email still hangs in cyberspace, and it doesn’t take much for your email provider to find that deleted email.
Remember email is not private.
The Democrats have learned that lesson the hard way, and my friends have learned that lesson the hard way. Even if you delete the email, your recipient has a copy.
Write as though your email will be public.
As I said, remember email is not private. Even our private thoughts and our private sins will be made public. Even if you write an inappropriate email that is never uncovered, that email is public to God: “And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account” (Hebrews 4:13).
Write in a Christian way.
Scripture gives us some important guidelines about our speech, and I recently wrote about Donald Trump’s failure to speak appropriately, and I’d urge you to check out that post for some specific ideas about Christian speech. However, we cannot forget how important it is to speak in a way that reflects a godly heart and that benefits others. Jesus said, “ The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45). Paul wrote, “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear” (Ephesians 4:29). Your fingers do the talking in an email, but your heart still shines through. Write with a Christian heart.
Be careful with your email. Be careful with your speech. Honor God in what you write and in what you say. Honor God in everything you do.