Mornings in the Roberts house are noisy. The television blares out the news. My hairdryer blasts away. The blender whirs my smoothie. Sometimes shouting is the communication mode because of all the noise.
Finally, I retreat to my office for a moment of silence and time in the Scripture and with the Lord.
Then, the day starts. I don my headphones for the next Zoom or Webex meeting.
I love silence. I learned that “Silence is Golden” as I grew up.
But there is a time when silence harms others.
I’ve been silent when I should have spoken up. When I should have taken action to right a wrong. When I was hurt but didn’t speak up. When I saw a Christian brother or sister go astray and didn’t reach out. When I should have spoken up in our marriage.
Silence caused a deep inflammation in my soul – sorrow, guilt, inadequacy, shame, withdrawal. The inflammation grew and festered.
When I remained silent, the silence continued and more silence sparked a flame. The flame grew until it spewed out onto others, and they retreated in silence or lashed back.
9 Reasons to Speak Up and Reach Out
- When justice hides.
Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves;
ensure justice for those being crushed.
Yes, speak up for the poor and helpless,
and see that they get justice. Proverbs 31:8-9 (NLT)
- When need arises.
A friend is always loyal,
and a brother is born to help in time of need. Proverbs 17:17 (NLT)
- When discouragement sets in.
“So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11 (NLT)
- When maturing together.
As iron sharpens iron,
so a friend sharpens a friend. Proverbs 27:17 (NLT)
- When believers stumble.
Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (NLT)
- When correction blesses.
“Wounds from a sincere friend are better than many kisses from an enemy.” Proverbs 27:6 (NLT)
- When redirection saves.
My dear brothers and sisters, if someone among you wanders away from the truth and is brought back, you can be sure that whoever brings the sinner back will save that person from death and bring about the forgiveness of many sins. James 5:19-20 (NLT)
- When the Word of God can pierce the soul.
“Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not.” 2 Timothy 4:2a (NLT)
- When making disciples.
“Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.” Matthew 28:19 (NLT)
Yes, there is a time for silence. A time for listening.
Our Father in Heaven, Your glory and majesty overwhelm Your children. Teach us when to be silent and listen deeply and when to speak up and take action. Thank You for Your Word. Teach us to be prepared to proclaim it lovingly and accurately. In Jesus’ name, amen.