I re-read my message for the final time, took a deep, long breath, and pressed the send button.
Oh boy, I wondered. How will she respond to this message?
Have you ever been scared after speaking the truth? Ever wondered what people would say, think, or even how you would be received afterward?
Recently, I found myself in that situation. While scrolling Facebook, I came across a friend's post about a New Age practice. I contemplated, how I could share in love, God's truth about this false religion. I found a good video teaching on the subject, sent her a short note, prayed, and hit the send button.
This year, I'm focused on using my voice more. This may seem a bit incredulous for those who know me as a former radio show host and politician; however, I'm not talking about that voice.
I'm referring to the inner, quiet voice that you and I have. The one (at least for me) that is too often silenced by doubt, insecurity, and the fear of rejection.
Are you familiar with this voice? It's the voice inside you that wants to warn a friend or family member about sin, but instead is muzzled by thoughts of what will they think of me?
It's the familiar voice that feels compelled to speak God's truth on discrimination, police brutality, institutional racism, or any other societal ill, but demurs because of fear, and not wanting to rock the boat.
It's that suppressed voice that longs to speak up for herself to her husband, and kids who mindlessly leave dishes in the sink, and clothes in heap piles for her to pick up; yet she doesn't say anything out of fear of starting an argument, or making family members angry.
Can you relate?
I have been vocal about teaching God's word and sharing biblical truths, while at times I have muted my inner voice which at times can be full of wisdom, and discernment. These thoughts have been silenced by thinking no one wants to hear you, people will get offended, they won't want to be around you.
The story of Zelophehad's daughters provides a wonderful example of five sisters who used their voices and shared their opinion in a firm and respectful way. In Numbers 27:1-11, Zelophedad, their father has died and the sisters are denied his inheritance because of their gender.
Despite this injustice, the sisters band together and open their mouths. They refuse to allow the inner voices of fear, doubt, and insecurity to muzzle them. They press forward in their advocacy for their inheritance despite the opinions of their peers (you can rest assured, people, talked about them!), they make their case to the priests and to Moses, unafraid of rocking the boat of gender discrimination. The sisters disallowed the fear of rejection to stop them --they brought their case before the chain of command, each time making their claim on why they should receive their inheritance.
Could it be that there are some things that God desires to release to you, but it will require you to speak up?
Perhaps you've prayed for peace, but now it's time to open your mouth and confront the circumstances or individuals that have made it difficult for you to maintain such peace.
Maybe you've seen loved ones go astray in a life of sin, is it now time for you to lovingly invite them to coffee, hear their story and share the gospel truth?
Zelophehad's daughters refused to be silenced by their fears. They listened to their inner voice, which cried out for justice and fairness. This inner voice also spoke practically to their needs and concerns. By their refusal to disregard themselves and their needs, their advocacy in turn not only impacted themselves but changed the law concerning women receiving their father's inheritance.
Recently, I was stressed and anxious about an issue. In order to get clarity, I needed to confront a loved one. I feared the confrontation (I don't like confrontation) and I also feared that possibly, this loved one might reject me. Obviously, I didn't want to have this conversation so I prayed that God would make the situation go away.
But, that didn't happen.
Instead, God nudged me to talk to my loved one. So I did, and from this communication, I received understanding and my loved one did too.
Maybe you need to, Just go talk to them about it.
Why? Because your voice matters.
God can bring healing, and justice through your voice.
God has equipped you with ideas, discernment, wisdom, and creativity. He has given you insight, and solutions that can help many people.
Zelophehad's daughters are an example of women living authentically. When we shrink back from fully expressing ourselves due to the fears of what people may say or think, we are only a diluted version of ourselves.
This is why I felt so strongly to send my friend the video teaching and message. What kind of friend am I, and am I living authentically, if I fail to listen to my inner voice and tell her the truth?
This year, may we speak up and speak out. May we be authentic with ourselves and in our relationships with others. May we speak firmly when it's necessary, and may we share the truth in love as a necessity.
Hi, my name is Kacie Starr Long. I am an author, speaker and I love to use my voice to point people to Jesus. When I'm not writing, I'm either working out at Orange Theory Fitness or sewing. God delivered me from food addiction and I have a sewing ministry for women who have been previously incarcerated and at-risk teens. I am the proud wife to Alfred T. Long, Sr and together we lead a non-profit that serves prisoners and their families. Connect with me at www.InspiredOverflow.com and via my YouTube page for more daily Christian teachings and encouragement.