I found out long ago that my voice has a credit limit. Like a credit card, once I hit my “spending” limit, my voice is no longer accepted.
It’s why I stopped speaking about politics.
Here’s what I mean:
If I have spent my time speaking about politics, and I am speaking in a way that is divisive, or to people who disagree about my politic or candidate or perspective or party, they will be unlikely to listen to me when I speak about something else, because I have “spent” my voice with them. They have listened to all they’re willing to listen to, and they are now tuning out.
For me, that’s expensive. I have spent all of my good will – my voice – with that person. Now I am in debt, and if I am going to have any spending credit (credibility) with them, I will need to manage my vocal finances much better in the future.
Or think about like this: If I am trying to sell you something, and every time we speak I press my product and act as though I am uninterested in a relationship, but more interested in a sale, I am likely to lose your friendship. My voice has a spending limit. Conversation about products I’m selling is more expensive than talking about things that matter to you, and it is easy to hit my credit limit if I’m not careful.
Church – you are the only people in the world who can credibly speak of the gospel, because you are the only people in the world who know the living Christ. Be careful how you spend your voice, because if you hit your credit limit when talking about your politics, your opinions, your complaints, your frustrations, etc., you will lose your opportunity to speak about Christ.
And the world (to be rather frank) doesn’t need another politician. When we speak our political thoughts, we’re typically speaking into a vacuum. Every ounce of energy we spend feeling frustrated about a political hot-button issue is an ounce of energy that will never see positive returns. It’s a poor investment.
But the world does need the gospel. And it needs followers of Christ who are committed solely to the gospel. It needs dedicated people who have not spent their vocal capital on things that have no returns on their investment, but instead things that have eternal returns on their investments.
To be as blunt as I know how: Using our voice to talk about politics undermines our ability to proclaim the gospel. Using our voice selfishly, or to express a divisive or hurtful opinion, or to promote an individual agenda, etc., undermines our ability to proclaim the gospel.
Christian! Use your voice carefully! Be a good steward! Spend your vocal capital on the only thing with an eternal ROI – the gospel.