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The Power of Your Absence
There is an appointed time for everything. A time to be silent and a time to speak. ECCLESIASTES 3:1, 7
The appointment had been on my calendar for more than a year. I was going to speak to the student body of Dallas Theological Seminary in their chapel service. But as the date neared, the flu bug that had kept Barbara in bed for a week showed no signs of letting up. A full week of suffering led to two.
And when the moment finally arrived for me to commit one way or the other, the choice seemed clear. Barbara couldn’t take care of herself, and she needed me a lot more than the seminary students did. So I canceled.
Amazingly, though, God used me to give a message there. The proof arrived in an email I received a couple days later from a friend who told me of two people who remarked that “even though you weren’t there, you taught them something. You showed them that family should be our main priority.”
It’s the first time I ever made such an impact by not speaking. Perhaps I need to start a non-speaking tour!
The experience reminded me that actions truly do speak louder than words.
What you model matters. The lives you lead are being watched and measured much more carefully than you realize. And they’re making an impact on others, from spouses to children, from coworkers to church friends, from neighbors to extended family members and beyond.
Never underestimate the power of your presence—or, in some cases, your absence!
Think of some people who communicate Christian character without saying a word. What traits of theirs would you love to model?
Thank the Lord for making our lives such powerful teachers and for the opportunity He gives each of us today to be a window of His heart and character.