They are slaves who fear to speak, For the fallen and the weak;
They are slaves who will not choose, Hatred, scoffing, and abuse,
Rather than in silence shrink, From the truth they needs must think;
They are slaves who dare not be, In the right with two or three. – J.R. Lowell
Pretty tough words don’t you think. None of us likes to think of ourselves as slaves, but don’t we find ourselves enslaved when it comes to public opinion. We see an injustice, but remain silent because we fear being “shunned” or “no longer being popular.” It is fiercely ingrained in our nature and our environment to want to be liked a whole lot more than being “right.” We see an injustice and privately “stew,” but we don’t call society to task. We admire those who stand “with the two or three,” but would prefer to be in the majority.
J.H. Thom wrote, “The real corrupters of society may be, not the corrupt, but those who have held back the righteous leaven, the salt that has lost its savor, the innocent who have not even the moral courage to show what they think of the effrontery of impurity….” His words may be a bit harsh, but nibble at the truth. As we meditate ask yourself “what enslaves me. Is the source popularity, or fear, or security, or is it something truly valuable such as family or the will of God.” This requires serious examination, but if your examination reveals your silence comes from fear, pray for the strength to overcome it. The world needs a lot more voices for the “fallen and the weak.”