Use Your Words

Use Your Words

Pentecost 169

 

The Voice is an American television program that is classified as a reality show, one of the few that actually is aired in real time about real people with real results all based upon…a voice.  The premise is simple: What truly counts for a singer is their voice.  Hundreds of local and regional judges hear contestants at local levels and the competitors go through an elimination process until almost one hundred make it to the show’s airing of auditions.   The field of hopefuls is narrowed down to a group of twenty-four who ultimately take part in the team and individual competitions.  The final four compete in the two-part grand finale, having spent months going through this process with the four industry-seasoned judges who act as role model and mentors.  Eventually a winner is chosen and receives a recording contract and a great amount of visibility.

 

 

We all have a voice if we are lucky enough to live in a nation that allows us to vote.  Even those living in a dictatorship, however, usually have an opportunity to exercise their voice.  Often we use our voice to ask questions.  Parents may very well be the only group of people that ask questions to which they are positive they already know the answer.  “Who broke my favorite vase?”  “Who ate all the cookies?”  “Who ate my bedroom slipper?”  “Who left the light on?”  Having been a parent, I’ve asked my fair share of such questions and, occasionally, I was surprised with the actual answer.

 

The fact is that we seldom ask questions to which we are positive we know the answer.  When parents ask questions like those above, they seldom are really listening to any answer they received.  They have already decided the answer and are asking for dramatic effect before issuing the punishment or consequence.

 

The Voice contestants originally sing facing the backs of the judges.  There is no eye contact, no swaying with clothing or hair styles.  The only “it factor” is the voice of a hopeful.  It is a wonderful analogy for prayer.  We stand, sit, walk, or kneel before that which we can feel but not see.  Our only talent is our faith, evidenced by the voice through which we pray.  It is not perfect not does it need to be.  It just needs faith.  Somebody to love us while we climb life’s mountains…Prayer is our stage on which we garner attention and guidance.  When we lift our voices, we pray.  In prayer, there are no losers.

 

How should we use our voice when we are promoting a cause?  We know what we want to say and many times, no questions are allowed. V We want to face those to whom we are speaking and dislike interruptions.  Yesterday the President of the United States gave a speech and was interrupted by someone wanting to promote the opponent.  The audience booed the man but was quickly admonished by the President.  Instead of thanking the crowd, the President encouraged the crowd to show respect to the heckler.  He used his words to illustrate true leadership and humanity.

 

We encourage small children to “use your words” instead of throwing temper tantrums but it is advice we as adults should also consider.  True maturity and leadership is illustrated when we use our words for causes which should be promoted.  Arrogance and ego are not worth the effort; neither is disruptive antagonism towards someone based upon their culture, race, religion or socioeconomic status. 

 

The voice is a beautiful thing when used properly.  You can make someone’s day extraordinary by sharing a compliment.  Let the tacky speech remain silent.  Use your words to make someone’s day better.  You’ll discover that the gift is returned tenfold.

 

 

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