I heard a little piece on Public Radio this week-end about "speaking up." About a young man who decided to keep silent for a year. To not say what he believed to be true. To let others sound off about their various convictions while he said nothing.
He learned that his silence has consequences. That his voice before had been important. That his silence meant important things went unsaid. He learned his voice was needed.
We're in times when speaking up can be costly. It can go all the way to costing your life. Jesus said to His followers:
"When the Counsellor comes, the Spirit of Truth, He will testify about Me. And you also must testify, for you have been with Me from the beginning." (John 15:26-27)
The call from Jesus to all of us who love Him, follow Him, is that we are to speak up, to tell the truth about Him to the world. Even if we are hated for doing so.
In a day of great animosity and incivility, it is very tempting for us to keep quiet. But, our voice is needed. Our heart needs to be made known. We are called to "speak the truth in love."
Our president feels that if he is criticized he must fight back, and hit his opponent even harder. Jesus teaches us a very different way. Speak truth, yes. But speak it directly, honestly, with love in our hearts, not rancor, not revenge.
We ae not to be destroyers on earth. We need to be healers. Jesus understood that His enemies, those who chose to crucify Him, "did not know what they were doing." He asked His Father to forgive them. He could see their heart. He could see that they did not understand what they were doing. They were acting in ignorance.
He means us to have grace to see that too. To speak up. To speak true. To be heard. But to speak with a loving heart, not a heart of hate.
And times are ready for that. They are in desperate need of people to speak with His Spirit. We can pray for grace and courage to speak that way.
Arthur A Rouner, Jr -
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ARTHUR ROUNER MINISTRIES