Like many folks, I enjoy seeing a good movie every now and then. Sadly, like many other folks, I don’t always take advantage of the opportunity to spend an enjoyable night out when it comes along. But recently I recognized there was a break in my normal routine and so my wife and I decided to take in a movie. First we had dinner than we went to the theater and saw The King’s Speech. I must say that I had no idea what the movie would be like, but it garnered twelve academy award nominations so it must have had something going for it.
The King’s Speech is a film about King George VI and his sudden rise to the throne of England. It was the advent of WWII and England needed to hear a clear and confident message of hope from her king. Yet, even as he had the gifts and pedigree for the job, George VI lacked confidence due to his obvious speech impediment. Realistically, I didn’t think I would enjoy a movie about a king who stammers, but to be honest, I enjoyed the movie very much. I won’t ruin the story, but I will say that it gives one plenty to consider, especially when we are faced with the opportunity to speak confidently with someone who may be confused about matters of faith.
Not all Christians are ready and willing to step up and speak out about their faith. Many lack confidence in either their knowledge of the Bible, strength of their voice or ability to articulate clearly what they believe and why. Christians ought to be glad for the opportunity to speak of God’s grace, but we humans don’t always believe we can do it. If this describes you, well, you’re not alone. Moses, as great a prophet and leader that he was, also lacked confidence in his ability to speak for God. In the fourth chapter of Exodus, Moses goes so far as to beg God to send someone else. He admitted to being slow of speech and lacking in eloquence. Yet God reminded him that it is God himself that gives speech to mortals. God promised to fill Moses with the words and message of deliverance. We all know how that story turned out.
Fast forward a few thousand years and not much has changed. Humans still suffer under the weight of a fallen and broken world. Many are lost and forgotten and countless more live well beyond the margins of society. In the instances where people suffer and feel lost and forgotten, people need to hear a confident message of hope from their king. God has something to say to those desiring to be delivered from sin and despair. Whom shall he send? Well, for starters, how about you?
To those whom God has called through baptism he gives the gift of the Holy Spirit. The same Holy Spirit of God who gave speech to Moses, the disciples and the apostle Paul, also gives speech to Christians of all generations. As it is with all our gifts and talents, we must learn to use them and be sure in our abilities. Just as George VI had to work hard in overcoming a speech impediment, Christians must practice the art of speaking the faith. Sunday worship, Bible study and fellowship gatherings are all opportunities for us to practice using our King’s speech.
Can you remember the last time someone asked you to speak about matters of faith? If not it is only a matter of time. God has something to say to a world that is hurting and wanting. He has given this word to the church so that we may confidently and boldly share it with others. Do you know what to say? Do you know how to say it? Are you confident in your ability? Chances are you have some doubts. Perhaps, but it is God’s word Christians are called to share, and God will not fail you. If you need to gain confidence, gather with God’s people, listen and learn while deepening your faith. Become comfortable speaking about your faith with the folks in your congregation, then go out into the world as ambassadors for Christ. Soon you will realize that it is God who speaks through you, and you can take delight in using the King’s speech.