Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Holding my Tongue

Esther 7:4
For we have been sold, my people and I, to be destroyed,
to be killed, and to be annihilated. Had we been sold as male
and female slaves, I would have held my tongue, although the
enemy could never compensate for the king's loss.

Wow! Can you imagine holding your tongue as you watch your family and yourself being sold into slavery? Living in America, I can't picture anyone doing that, and yet hear we have Queen Esther telling the king that this is such a grave situation that she has no other hope than to bring it up before him.

I have to say when I read this verse today I was struck. Having three very verbal children, I could handle a verse talking about not being entitled, and earning privileges. However, that is not what this verse concerns. This verse is telling me that I need to be willing to take offenses without speaking a word. I have to admit this concept is very difficult for me to grasp. Growing up, my brother and I developed an earnest sense of fairness that we did not like being taken advantage. Yet, that is what Scripture says I must be willing to hold my tongue.

I think back to a story my parents told me. While my dad was in school (I was probably three or four), he sold a car to a neighbor. Shortly after he sold him the car the neighbors moved -- taking the car with them and never paying my parents. My parents were taken advantage of and yet they held their tongue. Now looking at my life today, I realize that I find myself in situations that I tend to want to argue out of or fight back because they either put me in an uncomfortable situation or cause me to lose more than I was willing to pay.

When confronted with those situations that are not life or death, I need to learn to hold my tongue. Fighting for my assumed rights does not guard my testimony. Which is more important -- being comfortable and getting MY way or honoring God with a proper response to offense? Other people are watching, therefore I must hold my tongue so that God will be glorified.

And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies
of the field, how they grow; neither do they spin. . .
Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which
today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he
not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith.
Matthew 6:28-30

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