I think at some point in each of our lives we’ve struggled to find our voice. Whether or not you’re in this phase currently, or have mastered the ins and outs, I feel like there’s always more to learn.
At nature I’m a fairly quiet person, people who know me well know I can be extremely chatty, although on a normal basis I think I often struggle to find my voice. Just the other day I was at a coffee shop trying to get the barista’s attention, and no matter how many times I said excuse me, or Mam, she didn’t hear me. I could feel my face turn red as the man next to me giggled. A few days later I was at Starbucks and the barista didn’t get my order right (I can’t help it if my order is extremely complicated! A tall, hot, lightly sweetened chai tea, with no cane syrup, and soy milk instead of regular milk). I think I’m used to baristas forgetting the no cane syrup part by now and I just shrug and say oh well. Disappointed I got in the car and thought well maybe next time they’ll get it right. My mom noticed my frown and proceeded to ask me what had happened, so I gave her the run down. And her response was “Why don’t you go back in and have them remake it?” These words made me shiver. “Can you do it for me?” I asked. She refused and told me it was my drink, not hers. In that moment I decided that I’d rather just suck it up, and drink my chai tea. But my mom was persistent in me going back and getting my drink fixed, because she knows how stubborn I can be. I hate being the one to correct people, especially strangers. Telling waiters they’ve messed up my order is dreadful, and often times as I said earlier I just suck it up and eat whatever food they’ve gave me. This is something I’d like to work on, because there’s no shame in telling the truth. So I walked back in and waited until the barista wasn’t as busy making orders so that he could actually hear me, as I didn’t want to repeat my previous coffee shop incident. I asked him if he had put cane syrup in my tea, he apologized for the inconvenience and said he’d remake my drink. Not only did he remake my drink, but he also gave me two gift cards for free drinks!! So needless to say I walked out of Starbucks in a very good mood! Although this story is very lighthearted and you’re probably laughing, I do have a point. My point with this is, don’t be afraid to speak up. If you notice someone doing something wrong, call them out in a kind way. Find your voice and stand up for what you believe in. It may feel uncomfortable to speak up in the moment, but if you don’t you’ll regret being quiet afterwards.
Speaking up in your Faith…
I think this story can relate to speaking up when sharing the Gospel. This is something I’m not afraid to do, I remember a leader telling me a couple of years ago that she too went through a time where she also (as she put it) “tried to shove Jesus down people’s throat.” Although that feeling has never stopped for me, I’ve learned to control it and share the Gospel in a kinder way, because the last thing I want to do is scare whoever I’m speaking to. Sharing the Gospel is so important! I mean it’s not called “Good News” for nothing (can I get an amen)! So share it! I think a lot of people get nervous to talk about God, because they’re worried about their friend feeling uncomfortable or forced. By telling them about the things Christ has done in your life, instead of telling them how badly they need Christ, helps insure no feelings are hurt. A lot of the time they’re just waiting for a gentle push.
I met the Lord through a friend and all she did was ask me if I was ok with going to church after our sleepover. I was reluctant at first, and didn’t want to go, but eventually agreed. It can be difficult to change old habits and beliefs. I remember thinking, church just isn’t for me, but the biggest thing was I didn’t want to be condemned for the way I had been living, completely putting God on the back burner. Two years later I am so thankful for my friend’s boldness, and the other leaders and pastors who have taught me so much not only about the Lord, but about myself. So take it from me, persistence pays off. I’ve heard people say, “two things you never talk about are politics and religion.” But why? As Christians we are called to spread the Gospel. Psalms 93:6 says, “Declare His glory among the nations, His wonders among all peoples.” Think about it this way, when you’re in love you want to shout it from the rooftops and tell everyone, the same goes for Jesus. When were in love with the Lord shouldn’t we want to tell everyone about how wonderful He is, how unconditional His Love is, the joy He brings us, and His presence through hardships! Don’t be anxious about what to say let God do the talking. In Luke 12:12 it says “for the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say.” I have the most meaningful conversations about the Lord at the least expected moments, like when I’m in the car or at a coffee shop. We can’t control when someone’s heart or your own will be stirred up by the Lord, and most of the time it’s not on our agenda. Sometimes I can feel the Lord telling me to go talk to someone about Him, there have been many times where I’m like, “really, now?” and I don’t want to, you have to trust God, and know He gives us the right things to say. Being honest most of the time when I’m preaching, I really have no clue what I’m saying, words are just coming out of my mouth, and that’s God, giving me every word at the perfect moment. The other day I was talking with my mom when I felt the Lord calling me to share some of His word. When I finished talking I was blank, I had no clue what I had just said. And there have been times where I’ve learned something through what I’m saying while preaching to someone else. So don’t be afraid, trust God and when the right time comes He will give you the right words. As you go throughout your day pray God would give you the boldness to speak up, so He may use you and your words to glorify his name bringing change in others’ lives, and that He would put His words into your mouth.
Thanks so much for reading!! I’d love to hear how you met the Lord or ways you’ve seen him work in your life or others, let me know in the comments!