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Sinister Silence
Photo:Roy Thomas
Silence holds us in its grip. Collectively as families and individually within families or communities. Silence beats on our inner ears cajoling, tempting, threatening, lying. “You mustn’t say… Indeed, you cannot say… No one knows except you…. Silence is noble… Silence is honorable... You have to deal with this, alone, in secret… Shove it deep... People will see… What would they think….? God will understand….If the rest of the family knew…. You are on your own with this…  You cannot get help…. There is no help for this… You will dishonour yourself and your family if you tell… Don't be a tattletale.  You're not a cheat... You’ve kept it a secret all this time… It can die with you…”

Hiding behind its mask, silence lies. This kind of silence isn’t honouring or noble or safe. It is a nameless, faceless, cruel, and cowardly enslavement that quietly and maliciously sneaks up from behind clasping its hand tightly over one’s mouth while painfully stabbing one’s heart. Not satisfied with the effect, it grabs an arm and twists it agonizingly behind a back, all the while, never, ever, showing its true face.

Silence works gleefully, knowing that the hush it brings is its birthright; leaving open before it the right to namelessly and facelessly prey on the next generation… and the next… and the next…. Silent anguish. Silent pain. Silent isolation. Silent accusation. Silent identity theft. Crushing…silent…hurting. Silence. It comes dressed in many coats of deceit, casting the blame elsewhere, living the high life while leaving its victims to foot the emotional bill.


There is a reason we are told to “confess our sins one to another….” Confess means to tell, to share, to identify. “Sins” are those things that hold us back from God. Things that hold us back from what God intended us to be, to enjoy, to experience.. To “confess our sins one to another” then is “to identify the things that hold us”. And what happens when we do this? We…. are…. set…. FREE. Openly identifying and acknowledging the things that hold us is dangerous business but not for ourselves as Satan would have us believe. The danger is to Satan for speaking blows his cover and he loses his hold on his victim.

"If the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed". (John 8:38).

Yes, gather up the courage, find a trustworthy person, tell them the things that hold you, together bring these to our Savior and be free indeed.

"Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective" (James 5:16).

Yes, put on your armor, go to battle for another caught in the web of silence. Open your heart, open your arms, and listen to the things that hold them. Together bring these to our Savior, and watch Freedom unfold.

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By Rene Ammundsen. Copyright © 2009 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®.

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