“I will not say anything while evil people are near”.
Ps 39:1 GNB
In World War II a sign was posted in thousands of prominent places in Britain. It read, “Careless talk costs lives”. It was an indication that enemy spies were around and were listening to people’s conversations to pick up where defences were strong and what troop movements were taking place. Christian believers sometimes say things casually that inform non-believers about their problems and lack of faith. When this suggests that God has let them down it can be a big deterrent to listeners ever acquiring faith themselves.
The psalmist, it appears, had complained about God’s treatment of him to such an extent that other people had begun to doubt God themselves. Now, thinking of his situation of suffering and difficulty, he feels bad that he had thus allowed his suffering to cause him to talk about God too glibly and to misrepresent the Lord to “evil people”. He knew that it was one thing to wrestle with one’s own inner thoughts and doubts, but it was far worse to undermine someone else’s faltering belief in God.
Christian believers need to be on their guard. They need to be honest and human enough to admit to having problems when these are real. But they need to be judicious about whom they share their problems with. It is easy to hand ammunition to people who will take things said, misconstrue them, and portray the Christian faith – and the Lord himself – in a bad light. Such instances can put other people off ever making a commitment of faith themselves. It is the opposite of being a good witness for Christ. Be wide awake and sensitive to everyone around you.
Lord, help me to be a faithful witness for you.