Posted by: mikenicholsblog | June 20, 2010

had to speak

Twenty-eight years ago today, my wife and I were blessed with having a daughter. I can still remember the day like it was yesterday. If you have been blessed with children, you have similar memories of the day they were born. My wife and I are proud of our daughter, as I am sure you are of your children. We revel in all of their achievements. Most of us who would never brag about our own accomplishments, are quick to speak about the success of our children. When they cry, we cry.  And when they have joy, we share it with them…and with everyone else! It is only natural to speak of what brings us joy. In thinking of how easy it is to speak with pride about our children, I wondered why it is so hard to speak about what gives us the greatest joy.

It would seem normal that all of us who have a relationship with Christ would speak about it more. After all, at the moment of salvation, we gained eternal life in heaven, we were adopted into the family of God, we were privileged to be indwelt by the Holy Spirit, and have the capacity for His joy. We often said in my growing up days that the most important decision in life was accepting Christ. Everything else in our lives flows from that most vital relationship. So why are we so shy about our spiritual heritage. We all want to be proper in our dealings with others, and often worry about being called a fanatic, narrow-minded, or intolerant. But the truth is: God changed our lives through Christ, and that fact should cause us to speak freely and confidently about who we are.

Nothing can stop me from being a proud father, and I will speak it. Nothing should stop us from being proud Christ followers, and we should speak it! If we believe the world around us needs Christ, and eternity matters, how can we not speak up? We have a great example in Peter and John.

Acts 4:17-20
But to stop this thing from spreading any further among the people, we must warn these men to speak no longer to anyone in this name. Then they called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John replied, “Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God’s sight to obey you rather than God. For we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”

Peter and John were creating chaos for the religious establishment because they were speaking of Jesus, and that He was the only way of salvation. They spoke at their own peril. Christ had such a profound effect on them that they had to speak. They had a choice.  Obey God and speak, or obey the Sanhedrin and keep quiet. History would have changed dramatically if they had kept quiet. I am glad they didn’t.

Our Father’s message is still one of reconciliation through Christ. Christ followers are to be His ambassadors.  But  can we do it very well without speaking? I am sensitive to the fact this speaking up needs to be done appropriately. Don’t go into work tomorrow waving your Bible. But at the same time, don’t be afraid to speak up when God puts an opportunity before you. One of my most cherished spiritual memories came from simply telling a colleague that I would pray for his father. That started events that led to his accepting Christ. He had been an agnostic. God places us strategically, but we must speak.

Too often, I have failed to speak up! You may feel the same. But those around us deserve to benefit from our faith. If I can brag on my daughter, who I love dearly….I can brag on my Savior who loved me dearly….and so can you!  Speak up on matters of eternity, because eternity matters!


Responses

  1. so true — I love to talk about my kids –but recently missed an opportunity to speak of our Savior……. not proud of that.
    brad


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