“Look, I’m sending you as sheep among wolves. Therefore, be wise as snakes and innocent as doves. Watch out for people—because they will hand you over to councils and they will beat you in their synagogues. They will haul you in front of governors and even kings because of me so that you may give your testimony to them and to the Gentiles. Whenever they hand you over, don’t worry about how to speak or what you will say, because what you can say will be given to you at that moment. You aren’t doing the talking, but the Spirit of my Father is doing the talking through you. Brothers and sisters will hand each other over to be executed. A father will turn his child in. Children will defy their parents and have them executed. Everyone will hate you on account of my name. But whoever stands firm until the end will be saved. Whenever they harass you in one city, escape to the next, because I assure that you will not go through all the cities of Israel before the Human One comes. “Disciples aren’t greater than their teacher, and slaves aren’t greater than their master. It’s enough for disciples to be like their teacher and slaves like their master. If they have called the head of the house Beelzebul, it’s certain that they will call the members of his household by even worse names (Matthew 10:16-25, Common English Bible).
As I read today’s Scripture passage, when I got to these words, “…don’t worry about how to speak or what you will say, because what you can say will be given to you at that moment. You aren’t doing the talking, but the Spirit of my Father is doing the talking through you” it was like the words were beyond bold print. It was like they were written in neon lights and flashing arrows pointing at them.
As someone who stands before a group of people every Sunday morning, I sure hope it is God speaking and not me. I really don’t think I have that much to say that is worth stopping and listening. God, on the other hand, has a lot to say, and we all need to take the time to listen. Unfortunately, many of us don’t stop and listen at all.
Sometimes we think we are greater than we really are. We believe we are smarter than we really are. For many of us, at least at times, we believe God takes a back seat to us. We might acknowledge with our words that God is smarter and has a better handle on things than we, but our actions often reflect things our words don’t say.
Each Sunday, when I rise to preach, it is always my prayer that God speak through me. The words in this lesson seem to me like a promise. Even in those moments when I realize I am not as smart as I sometimes think, and I still have to stand in front of people with something to say, God will give me the words. Better still, God will use my voice to speak a message to a gathered crowd. Those words will make a better message than anything I could ever say on my own.
It is my prayer, “Lord, come and speak to these people. Let my words, be your words, that together we might share the Gospel of Christ. It is in His name we pray. Amen.”
May it be so today and always.
What do you allow God to speak through you?
Have a blessed day in the Lord.
Joy, Peace and Thanksgiving,
Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved