Quay County Sun - Serving the High Plains

By Leonard Lauriault
Religion columnist 

God has no silent partners


Albeit with good intentions, parents sometimes cause their children problems. My daughter has chastised me several times about one such instance: We hyphenated her first name with both components capitalized and abbreviated it “L-A.” So, for insurance or other “legal” documents, her first name often gets entered into the computer incorrectly and she has to call to find out how they spelled it because their computer doesn’t recognize her.

There’s a probably-false account about a Deep South woman who named her daughter “L-A” and got angry when people pronounced it phonetically. Her response was, “Her name’s ‘LaDasha,’ because da dash, it don’t be silent!”

Shortly before my daughter complained most recently about her name, I had attended a memorial service at which the poem, “The Dash© (http://www.linda-ellis.com/the-dash-the-dash-poem-by-linda-ellis-.html)” was cited about the period between a person’s birth and death shown as a dash on their headstone. Upon her complaint, I recalled that poem and connected it with the Deep South mom’s statement about the dash not being silent. It occurred to me that many people have a short radius on their realm of influence; they live life quietly within a small circle of family and friends while others have a longer radius.

Whether Christians have a two-dimensional (circular) or three-dimensional (spherical) realm of influence, Jesus expects our dash to not be silent. He has no silent partners. His last words on earth were to go and teach to make him more followers (Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 16:15-16). Anyone who doesn’t gather with/for Jesus, actually scatters (Matthew 9:37-38; 12:30; John 4:34-38).

Does that mean that everyone must stand behind a pulpit or go to foreign lands and teach publically? No; it means that somehow, we must demonstrate through our lifestyle the truth of our confession of faith upon which we were baptized into Christ to have our sins forgiven and to receive the indwelling of the Holy Spirit (Romans 10:8-13; Acts 22:16 ; 8:35-39; 26:9-20; 2:36-39; Matthew 4:14-16; 1 Peter 3:15-16). To live otherwise, even if we profess faith, is actually to deny Jesus leading him to not recognized us in our time of greatest need during the judgment (Titus 1:15-16; Matthew 10:32-33; 7:21-23).

Our light is going to shine down some pathway. Whether it directs those we influence on the pathway to eternal life in God’s presence or to eternal punishment will be determined by whose “light” we shine (1 John 1:5-9; 2 Corinthians 22:14-15; John 3:19-21).

The word “behavior” in 1 Peter 3:1, 2 and 16 of the New International and American Standard Versions or “conduct” in the New King James was translated “conversation” in the original King James and Revised Standard Versions. Those earlier translators knew that the way we live speaks volumes about what we believe, no matter what claims we make verbally.

The dash representing our lives won’t be silent. Does yours prove your faith in God? Are you setting yourself and your realm of influence, including your children, up for difficulties because your dash says the wrong message (Luke 11:23)?

Leonard Lauriault writes about faith for the Quay County Sun. Contact him at [email protected]


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