Breaking the Silence
by Michele McCarthy
And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Matt. 28:18-20
“I was just calling to tell you goodnight!” I announced to my husband. After all, he was all the way across the expanse of our brand-spanking-new king size bed. My whispered “goodnight” could have been lost traveling through the chasm between us. My cellphone was planted secretly under the bed on my side. When I crawled into bed, I reached down and quietly dialed our home number. Unaware, he answered the home phone on his bedside table just as he was slipping under the sheets.
We’d been married over a decade when we bought our first king-sized bed. I was thrilled. My husband, not so much. He lamented over and over that I would be “way over there” on the other side of the bed. When he answered the phone and heard my voice, he turned, looked through “you got me” eyes, and I waved to him from the other side. It was hilarious. Basking in my cleverness, I laughed myself silly.
Most every night I “call” my heavenly Father. We connect relationally, sharing heart to heart about the day. I ask Him to speak to me through dreams in the night. I look forward to intimate moments with Him before I slumber.
When I leave the house each day, I’m learning to ask the Lord to lead me to someone who needs to hear from Him. Recently, I was led by the Holy Spirit, at the mall, to speak to a man. Turns out He was a practicing Muslim. This conversation went beyond my comfort zone. Yet oddly enough, I felt comfort and confidence rise up in me. I have only been stepping out for Jesus like this for a few years.
This gentleman kindly tried to explain his beliefs. I listened. Sharing with him how much Jesus loved him and wanted him to excel in life wasn’t hard. I explained that Jesus is the only way to God. We talked awhile but agreed not to debate. He was as passionate about his beliefs as I was mine.
I marvel at the thousands who believed at Pentecost and the stories about the disciples in the book of Acts. But the reality is our stories today continue building God’s Church until Jesus returns. In Acts 4:29, Peter and John asked to speak God’s word with all confidence, in the marketplace of a community who often didn’t agree with what they said. As they depended on the Holy Spirit to give them the right words, I pray for His guidance as I also speak out.
After a day of attempting to show Jesus to people who may not appreciate what I have to say, I’m ready to lay my head down on my soft pillow atop my king size bed. With a grateful heart, I snuggle deep under the covers, Christ within me, no chasm between us. No span across a king size bed keeping us apart. No cellphone necessary. God right here with me and you, the giver of rest.
Yet, I believe with my whole heart God also wants to shake us awake – to impart boldness to us to represent His love and power everywhere we go (His plan all along). I often feel the Lord imploring us to step out of the “rest” mindset of our church huddle and speak up in our marketplace – because the time of silent Christianity is over!
Arise, shine; for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you. For behold, darkness will cover the earth and deep darkness the peoples; But the Lord will rise upon you and His glory will appear upon you. Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising. Isaiah 60:1-3 ESV