It had been a long Sunday. One full of taking out the trash and changing toilet paper rolls for over 100 people. A day of hurting feet and not enough Starbucks.
So I sat on the tailgate of my loaded down truck parked next to the dumpster as more trash was brought around, ending my tasks with a deep breath and my eyes set on the still blue sky of a summer’s day.
I hadn’t been sitting for long before I felt my phone pulling me out of my daydreams and back into the reality of the moment.
I had a new text message.
It was a number I didn’t know.
All it said was Romans 10:14.
“How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?”
My face held the expression of a raised eyebrow and titled head as the oddity of the situation hit me. The verse didn’t resonate, it didn’t hit some secret spot in my spirit that I had been completely blind to, it didn’t change my life.
So I let it roll and went back to taking out the trash.
The week carried on, conversations were had, the dumpster overflowed and I juggled toilet paper rolls as if it were going out of style. The week of Project Searchlight was coming to an end as three squads of World Racers came together for one last morning worship with these people they had spent the last year of their lives walking beside.
And all I knew was how loved they were.
All I knew was that this overwhelming amount of love that I had come to have for them, the joy that brought tears in conversations and laughter through recounted stories, a sense of pride that swelled at the hope they carried as they dared to not only dream, but to move, was a love that I only caught a glimpse of.
It was a love that paled in comparison to that of the love their Father had for them.
A Love that delighted in every dream they dreamt, in every hope they carried. In every song sung and tear shed; in every step forward, His heart beat with a love that cannot be understood, exaggerated or outdone.
So I set my feet moving. I walked around them, praying and interceding more earnestly than I ever had, asking no, begging, for The Lord to show them, for them to have a revelation that hit their heart and swept them off their feet. I just wanted them to understand and believe and hear.
I just wanted them to know.
“And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?”
Those words echoed in my thoughts with such a forceful and gentle voice that it struck a secret spot in my spirit that I didn’t know I was blinded to.
They changed my life.
Because despite my intercession and ridiculous pacing, they weren’t going to believe what they had never heard. They weren’t going to hear what was never spoken.
And the fear that embodied the thought of standing up in front of them outweighed everything else.
The fear kept me silent.
It took away my voice.
And as I let those words roll around, as I did a little musing and truly let them settle in my soul, I began to realize that throughout my life, my voice had always been attacked. It had been shut down and silenced. The notion that what I had to say wasn’t actually that important had somehow become truth in my heart.
I had let it rule my actions and throw away the key to my zipped lips.
“And how can anyone preach unless they are sent?” Romans 10:15
So I’m being sent. I’m going back out. To preach not only the good news to the ones who have never heard it, but to simply speak.
To allow the thoughts in my head and the beliefs of my heart to come to life in the form of words escaping my lips. To sing at the top of my lungs with the freedom I long for everyone to experience.
Let them hear.
So they can believe.
That I may believe.
May we not be silent.