• Rhonda Harper

I Have Decided to Follow Jesus - Speech

“Congress shall make no law … or abridging the freedom of speech, …” (from the 1st amendment)

As a citizen of the United States, through its Constitution, I am guaranteed the legal right to say aloud whatever I want to say. If I want to boast in something, I may do so legally. If I have a gripe, I can also make that known, publicly, if I so choose, with no fear of legal repercussions from the government.

However, because I have put on Christ, my first citizenship is in heaven. My heavenly citizenship dictates that I live according to heavenly laws, which don’t always align with America’s laws.

Paul told the Corinthians, Everything is permissible,” but not everything is beneficial. “Everything is permissible,” but not everything builds up. No one is to seek his own good, but the good of the other person.” 1 Corinthians 10:23-24 There were things, as a Roman citizen which Paul was allowed to do, legally. However, as a Christian, those things would not have benefitted the cause of Christ, so he abstained. I may be allowed to legally yell and scream and raise a ruckus over the hottest political topic of today, but how do my words affect the stand I want to take for Christ?

My legal rights in the USA cannot be used if they violate the commands of God in His Holy Scriptures. In too many scriptures, I am reminded that I cannot serve God and demons; God and man; or God and self. Learning to control my words (written or spoken) is strongly addressed by James (3:1-12).

Lord, I pray, if I choose to use my words vehemently, let me use them so only for the furtherance of Your gospel! When I am angry, please help me shut my mouth or lose my fingers.

“Angry words, oh let them never, from the tongue, unbridled slip. May the heart’s best impulse ever, check them ere they soil the lip.” (page 112, Sacred Selections)