We must obey God before man– Acts 5:29
There’s something about wanting to be liked… it’s human nature. A crippling need deep inside of us that longs for other’s approval.
Standing up for what you believe requires risk. If you have a strong opinion about something and start voicing it, then you’re taking a chance. Naturally, there will be some people who agree with you and like you even more. While others won’t agree with you, deciding that maybe they don’t like you so much after all. They may even decide to unfriend or unfollow you on social media over a difference in opinion. Therefore, we keep quiet because we are controlled by what other people think of us.
But aren’t we as Christ-followers called to live before an audience of one? Aren’t we called to be a voice for the voiceless and to break the barriers of injustice?
There’s something freeing about letting go of needing approval. It’s like unlocking the chains that have kept you in bondage. When you don’t care what people think of you, you are free to speak what God is stirring inside of you.
People who make history are not ruled or dictated by other people’s opinions about them. God calls certain people to stand up against injustices. He calls some to be an advocate for change, to make progress, to make a shift in culture. Jesus prayed, “God may your kingdom come to earth as it is in heaven”. To make earth more heavenly, change must take place.
God brings about change by working through obedient believers who are completely surrendered to His will and the leading of His Spirit. Is God calling you to be a voice for change?
Just think of all the men and women who have gone before us who were brave enough to take a stand on an issue that was bigger than themselves. They understood what they were called to fight against was more important than their very lives. I think of Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks, as well as Jesus and his disciples.
One thing they all had in common was that there were people trying to keep them quiet. They endured threats and were berated. The religious leaders of the day tried to keep Jesus quiet because he didn’t fit their stereotypical mold. He was not the Messiah that they had envisioned in their legalistic minds. The Pharisees tried to keep Peter and all the other disciples silent too. They were given strict orders not to teach in the name of Jesus. What if the disciples gave into the threats that were made by religious leaders? What if the fear of being imprisoned, tortured and crucified had a stronger grip on them than the gospel did?
You and I as Christians are called to something that is bigger than ourselves Let’s stand up for what’s right! Stand up for equality! Let us refuse to be ruled and governed by what people think of us. Let us instead be ruled and governed by pleasing the Holy Spirit.
To say what you think involves risk. If you’re wrestling with whether or not to take a stand, there are a few questions you should ask yourself.
Do you believe God is calling you to speak up? Is what you have to say worth the cost? If you’re not sure, ask yourself these questions: Is this cause worth fighting for? For the sake of my children and my children’s children? Would society be better if this change were to take place? Are there people who are not being valued based on their gender, culture or ethnicity differences? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then will you prayerfully consider being a voice for change in Jesus’ name?