When Speaking God’s Word is Challenging

Shala asked for two things when she was getting ready to leave for bootcamp. She wanted her grandmother’s bible and a three-month supply of her favorite bubble gum; it was hard to find, but she never went anywhere without it. She’s a very strong-willed and determined young woman, and it wasn’t a surprise to anyone that she wanted to join the military, but the truth is that she found it very lonely in the beginning. This was unusual because she’s always been outgoing and found it easy to make friends, but some of the people she encountered during bootcamp were ruthless. They could do some pretty dastardly things without giving it a second thought. For the first time in her life, she felt like she was in the wrong place. She knew things would be challenging but wasn’t prepared at all for how some people viewed friendship. No one seemed to be truly loyal, and she told her parents how sad this made her feel.

Opting out of matriculating out of state, Shala chose to go to community college when she graduated high school. Her grandmother was ill, and Shala wanted to be close to home. It might have been a hard choice for anyone else, but her family was tightknit. Although she knew she’d eventually join the military, she had been very content to put off moving away for as long as possible. 

Witnessing the gospel to others was common practice for Shala. It’s how she was raised. Twice a month or so, she and her family passed out sandwiches in the park to the homeless while telling them about Jesus Christ. When you’re in the comfort of your loved ones and friends, telling others about our Lord and Savior doesn’t present the same challenge as doing it alone. With others, the presence of the Holy Spirit is sometimes palpable as you minister God’s Word, and a connection is often made with the heart of the person you felt led to speak to. To Shala’s surprise, she had not yet experienced an opportunity in the military where she felt inspired to share her faith and talk about Jesus Christ with anyone she had met.    

Many of us think we know ourselves so well, but we forget that our environment has made us comfortable. And some of us have been in our comfort zones for a very long time. We may not have extravagant conditions or circumstances, but the well from which we draw comfort is what we know. It’s familiar, and we don’t realize how comfortable we’ve been until we are outside our zones. When this happens, we’ll find that people are different. The tone and texture of the atmosphere is different, and we might find ourselves responding to this newness in a way that surprises us.

As children of God’s light, we must live by His Word. Jesus Christ said in Luke 16:8(NLT), “The rich man had to admire the dishonest rascal for being so shrewd. And it is true that the children of this world are more shrewd in dealing with the world around them than are the children of the light.” Of course, this is true today, but sometimes we forget how bad darkness is. We forget that we are in this world, but we are not of it. As God’s people, we have a calling to fulfill, and it is to introduce light in this dark place. Through His infinite grace and mercy, God allows us to be surrounded by those who offer His love and care, but there will come a time when we’ll step outside our comfort zones. There will be those who dislike the light we carry, because it illuminates what they don’t have, but we should never shy away from shining brightly.

Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of the Almighty God. He is King of kings, and He is our precious and powerful Lord and Savior, yet, John 1:11-12(NLT) tells us, “He came to his own people, and even they rejected him. But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God.” Jesus Christ endured the insults, the persecution, and the shame of the cross because he wanted to do the Will of the One who sent him, our Almighty God. Our faithful Master stood on the solid foundation of God’s Word, and he understood that when you stand on God’s Word, you cannot be defeated. When He prayed to God specifically for his disciples, he didn’t ask God to isolate them on an island somewhere, nor did he ask God to remove them from the world. No. In John 17:17, he prayed that God would sanctify them through the truth of His Word; it’s the only thing that can cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

God’s Word makes us mighty warriors. We are more than overcomers through Jesus Christ, but this doesn’t mean we will always feel like overcomers. Sometimes, we’ll face situations and be among people where we don’t know what to say or do, because everything seems foreign to our way of thinking and speaking. These are the times when the indwelling Holy Spirit will sharpen our discernment even more. There is most certainly an assignment for us, and we must be patient as God reveals its. When we’re faced with situations like Shala’s, being away from those in whom we take comfort and around those who have no clue how to offer it, we must press into God. We must learn to depend on Him alone, so that we become better at hearing His voice, and we learn what it means to focus only on Him.

Change in life is inevitable, and as it presents new challenges and opportunities, we must remain anchored in God’s Word. It is important that we never lose virtue or let ourselves be conformed to the world. It can be daunting at times to speak the Word when systems, institutions, and people appear to be against it, but we can take comfort that God knows every detail of our lives. He will set the time for us to speak His Word. He will tell us who to speak it to, and the Holy Spirit will give us the boldness and the opportunity to share the lifechanging Good News of God’s Word.■

Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.

“When Speaking God’s Word is Challenging”, written by JMack, 4theChristianMan.com© 2019. All rights reserved. All praise and honor to God through Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.

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