The earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. –Genesis 1:2-3
Have you ever been in a room full of people who were having lively conversation and you just didn’t know what to say? Maybe you felt that you were ignorant of the topics discussed, possibly the personalities of the people intimidated you, or perhaps you were feeling anxious about the conflict that your words might create.
My voice is something I have struggled with for years. In school my teachers constantly gave feedback on the volume of my voice. Outside the classroom, I was given feedback on the style of my voice—it was “too feminine” or “too gay.” What could my voice possibly accomplish in the world if no one could hear me and no one liked the way I sounded?
The writer of Genesis 1 describes God’s voice as having the power to create light where there had only been darkness. This divine voice continues to make things happen in this creation story. And finally, “God saw everything that she had made, and indeed, it was very good” (Genesis 1:31a). God says this after having created people like me and like you. And people like you and like me, the writer argues, are made in God’s image and likeness.
So I wonder, then, if God’s voice had the power to bring light into darkness and create beauty and goodness in the world, what can my voice do? Even when it’s uncomfortable, even when I am afraid, even when I feel ignorant, I’m working to remember that I have been privileged with a voice to bring light, create beauty and show goodness in God’s world.
God who spoke light, beauty, grace and truth, use our communication, whether that be our voices, our writing, or any other medium, to be a conduit of your goodness in the world. Amen.
Lance Hurst is the congregational life coordinator at Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church and a candidate for ministry in the United Church of Christ.