“Is a lamp brought in to be placed under a
bushel basket, or under a bed, and not to be placed on a lampstand?”
Mark 4: 21
This verse from Mark has progressively become more and more meaningful
for me in my development and discernment here at Creighton University
both as a student and follower. It is so fundamental to Christ’s
message and his later invocations to his disciples and all those
who would identify with his teachings and promise of salvation.
As Christians, and even more universally as human beings, we were
not created to be silent. Silence is the antithesis of our created
purpose. We have been created to be in constant dialogue with creation
and with our Creator.
Jesus in this verse provides an allegorical reminder of the dangers
of silence. Throughout the course of history, silence has allowed
for unspeakable evils to be perpetuated. We were not created to
be passive, apathetic or ignorant. We were brought into existence
to serve and glorify God and certainly ignoring injustices and perpetuating
oppression though our own silence, which is most commonly a product
of fear, is not fulfilling our roles as God’s beloved people.
The church has even rendered that in certain situations silence
is a sin of omission.
We live in a world that is full of silence. I have been silent,
and more than likely you have been silent too. Yet, how can that
be… since such silence runs counter to our purpose as created
beings? Personally, I feel that it is because silence typically
offers few rewards and if anything, it offers a life of loneliness
and isolation. Those who allow for their lights to shine, much like
the early prophets, usually preach messages that society on the
whole is reluctant to or does not want to hear and/or accept. However,
Christ offers those who choose not to be silent, hope later in this
passage from Mark, saying, “The measure with which you measure
will be measured out to you, and still more will be given to you”
(Mark 4: 24). As we approach the season of Lent, let us keep the
reality of silence, as individuals and as members of the Creighton
community, in our thoughts and prayers and make commitments to let
our lights shine and illuminate those in our community who live
and suffer because of silence.
“The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who
do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.”