And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. Romans 8:28 NLT
Recently, during a business ethics course, the term “moral muteness” really stuck with me. Moral muteness is quite simply, an unwillingness to speak up or when someone turns a blind eye to a wrong-doing. Often moral muteness happens because people think that if they just mind their own business and keep their head down, they won’t become a target themselves.
Let’s look for a moment at what breaking moral muteness is not. It is not self-righteous. It is not condemnation of others. It is not necessarily about taking up “moral causes” or holding oneself and others to a strict moral code.
In Romans 8:28 we see that God requires us to “work” with others for the greater good. We each have gifts of the spirit that God expects us to use. One gift of the Spirit we often see with people connected to a church is the gift of prayer, which is a very important gift that we should use frequently. But we each have other gifts that require action. If we have faith and trust in God, we are able to use our gifts to help others, to empathize and respond and to generally make the world a kinder place.
As Saint Augustine said, “Pray as though everything depended on God. Work as though everything depended on you.”
The next time you hear someone saying unkind things about someone else, consider letting that person know that you are sorry to hear this type of thing. When you are a witness to a negative situation, consider stepping out and offering your support. If someone needs help, get involved. All of these things may be uncomfortable and yes, they could make you the focus of some negative attention. But if you consider for a moment how you would feel if no one came to support you if the situation were reversed, it likely means you should offer your support right now.
Dear God, give us each the strength to do Your will. Help us to get involved to make the world a better place. And protect us from negative consequences when we act out in love. Amen
By Denise Mainquist