Appalling Silence

by Anna Hartge

Appalling Silence

Then, as He was now drawing near the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works they had seen, saying:“ ‘Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord!’Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” And some of the Pharisees called to Him from the crowd, “Teacher, rebuke Your disciples.” But He answered and said to them, “I tell you that if these should keep silent, the stones would immediately cry out. Luke 19:37-40 NKJV

I was preparing materials for a racism workshop to be held during an observance of the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. As I studied his most famous writings, this quote from his letter from the Birmingham Jail, disturbed me. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr said “We will have to repent in this generation not merely for the hateful words and actions of the bad people but for the appalling silence of the good people. (emphasis added) Human progress never rolls in on wheels of inevitability; it comes through the tireless efforts of men willing to be co- workers with God…

I have read and recited those words many times, but in the current climate in our nation, the weight of the words hang heavy on me as one who professes to believe in Jesus as our King, our Lord, and our Savior. I feel compelled to take this opportunity to speak a word for Him as I urge us not to let the political leaders or the crisis of the day, take our eyes off of the only one who can see us through.

Luke 19 tells the story of the Triumphal Entry of Jesus as He made His way to the Mount of Olives. The people who has witnessed His works began to shout out their praises but some of the Pharisees told Jesus to tell His disciples to be quiet.

I pray that in the midst of challenging times, when some would say to the saints who are serving God with gladness, “why are you doing that, why are you joining rallies, why do you give so much, what are you so joyful about, it doesn’t take all that” someone will have a flashback, remember what God has already done and that God still has all power in His hands. He wants us to serve Him in spirit and in truth. God wants us to demonstrate love, grace and mercy to others, as he has shown us. God wants us to be His witnesses!

My faith journey makes it hard to be silent when things are going wrong around me, but today I recommit to using my voice to help break the silence about racism and injustice.

I refuse to let the rocks to cry out in my place.

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