These days what you say can get you into a whole lot of trouble. We’ve seen that in the political arena with the home secretary, on social media with former athletes speaking out about the unfairness of trans-men competing as women, and on the streets of London. Perhaps you saw the coverage of the Christian evangelist arrested outside Southgate Tube Station for preaching about Jesus. His offence? He was accused of hate speech because he dared to say that Islam is false.
The pressure on Christians in the UK to keep silent is huge, the forces against us are mustered and well organised, but we must speak up. We must not keep silent. As I’ve been writing over the past few weeks, we have a better story to tell, and a true eternity-changing story to tell, and tell it we must.
In Romans 10, Paul explains that the gospel of Jesus is for all people and then he says this: “But how 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?” We may not all be preachers- but we can talk about Jesus to our friends and neighbours and colleagues. That is our calling as Christians. We have a better story to tell. Let’s be bolder and speak up for Jesus and speak up for the better story we have.
So here’s my Lent challenge. Spend a moment or two about thinking of 4 people you would love to chat with about Jesus. Then, write their names in your Bible and every day this Lent, pray for opportunities and the courage to speak to them?