Oppression of Faith
I have come to realize that at times and during certain situations I have had a habit of oppressing my faith. It is easy to speak of and get excited about my walk with the Lord with those who I know have beliefs similar to my own, (which is great because we encourage and motivate one another’s faith [Romans 1:12]). But very seldom would I breach my ‘comfort zone’ and reach out toward others around me. I wouldn’t change my personality; I would still try to be the best person I could be and the type of person who I know God would be mostly pleased with. Nor did I make any type of attempt to hide my beliefs (in the event that faith was brought up) but I would rarely actually bring faith and beliefs up myself. Well, I am not (and should not be) satisfied with God being mostly pleased with me! I want to please Him entirely, I want to be God’s Girl!
Faith should not and cannot be conditional upon situation or fellowship (that could be considered hypocrisy)! God has commanded me to share His word, for me to share my faith with everyone around me! (Matthew 28:19, Psalms 96:3) Not only is not sharing the word of The Lord defying His commandment, but it is also so very selfish! Faith is NOT a secret society and should never be treated as such. I must choose to not only live my own life serving the Lord and walking alongside Him but also to grab those hands around me and do my best to pull them into the light, and into His Grace!
Now, I do not wish for my words here to be misconstrued into thinking that I feel the need to shove my faith and beliefs down the throats of others. By no means do I think that that would be at all constructive, as a matter of fact it might do more harm than good. I can share my faith, beliefs, and the Word in small and open ended ways (open ended being a leading statement that will have whoever I am speaking with at the very least questioning my phrase, which in turn usually ends up with them asking questions). This gives me the opportunity to share with them, while still being conscious of their openness to hear. It can be futile to share with someone who has no willingness to listen (and receive). I want to be sure that I will always get the opportunity to share when that person will actually listen, and to not just hear. I want that person to be receptive of my message for them!
listen : to give ear to; to hear with thoughtful attention; to pay attention to.
hear: to perceive sound.
In order to truly listen one must be willing to receive. Hearing is not receiving. I pray that God uses me to be that knock that pushes those around me to open the door of their hearts to the Lord!