Without a voice

I’m not sure I have ever been this long with little to no voice.  Funny how it happened right after I preached a sermon on Sunday, which went fine.  Not having a voice has had an interesting effect on me…

I’ve had a lot of time to think.  School is complete and I am unable to run.  This time of thinking has been good.  As I was thinking about this really minor problem that will correct itself soon, these two important things came up:

Not having a voice has given me the opportunity to listen more.  I try not strain my voice to say anything unless I think it really needs to be said.  It has definitely caused me to stop and think before I speak…not something I do often enough.  When it requires effort to say something, you want to make sure what you say counts.  This has allowed me to be quiet and have the opportunity to simply listen.  It has been an opportunity to not only listen to others, but also to listen to God.  All too often, when I pray, it is me talking and God listening.  This type of prayer isn’t building a relationship, but more unloading my list of things I need help with.  It could be called my “God-do” list rather than the “honey-do” list.  If this is my only prayer, I am missing opportunities to fellowship with God, to worship, and to hear.  Being silent allows me to reflect on what God is doing.  It allows me to worship without asking for anything.  It allows me to focus on the Creator of it all and appreciate what he has made and is doing.  May God continue to work on me with this, even after my voice returns.

-It brought to mind those in our world who have “no voice.”  There are people all over the world that truly have no voice.  I don’t mean that they cannot speak literally.  I mean that they are ignored, treated poorly, abused, abandoned and/or forgotten.  There are people who have found themselves in situations that they are screaming for help but no one can hear them…or at least no one chooses to hear them.  I thought about the often quoted Matthew 25 and “the least of these.”  Maybe God has given us ears to hear…not the things of this world…but ears to hear those shouting to be heard.  Maybe God is giving us eyes to see…to see those who have been forgotten or abandoned.  Maybe God is giving us hands to reach out…to show others that they are somebody…to bring them to the table and fellowship.  Maybe God is giving us feet to go…to those places where he leads, no matter how scary…so that we can visit those who need HIM.  Maybe, just maybe, taking care of the least of these is not just feeding…but loving, supporting, and giving voice to those who have forgotten they even have one.

I’m praying that God will allow me to hear…to see…to serve…and to go!

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