Have you ever faced a situation, knowing that if you did what God was asking, you would lose a great deal? Even to the point of ruining your reputation with those you know? This past spring, I was there.
The Lord brought me into a position to speak for those that couldn’t. He led me to an opportunity to challenge some pretty powerful people in my community about their decisions. Decisions that I was confident would result in discrimination against and oppression of people whose stories I had come to know. I never asked for this knowledge, I never asked to be in the positions I held, and I certainly didn’t ask for the attention this situation received. It would have been so easy for me to be overwhelmed, to justify staying quiet and comfortable – but I heard more clearly than ever that God had called me to this moment. He was asking me to speak. So I did. I spoke up, I didn’t back down, and the events that followed were more than I could have anticipated.
I quickly learned that when you call out the unethical decisions of people in power, they do not always respond with kindness. In fact in this circumstance, they responded with malice. People I had respected who held high positions lied. Grown men gossiped and tried to intimidate me. I lost people I considered friends and I lost A LOT of sleep. I saw adults exhibit selfish and self-serving behaviors, without regard for truth or the best interest of others. I realized I had been ignorant and naïve to assume that because someone says they believe in equality, doesn’t mean they actually do when it doesn’t serve them.
But do you know what also happened? It took months of heartache, but I was able to bring awareness to systemic inequities that have existed for a long time. My confidence grew, my resolve strengthened, those who knew me rallied behind me, and I felt God come alongside me more than ever before. I learned that friendship isn’t always reciprocated when you speak up. Some people will choose to shy away from you and the controversy, not able to take the discomfort. But, some people will press in, they will encourage and stand with you.
Know this: when we choose to take a stand for Christ, we will face opposition, the Bible tells us to expect it! When we stand up, we may lose friends, but we are not called to hold things on this earth in high regard. We are to “set our minds on things above!” (Colossians 3:2). We are to take up for the things God cares about, just as Jesus did when he walked this earth. Because when we do, we are carrying out His calling for us, and THAT is worth standing up for.
As women, we are at times our worst critics, both of ourselves and each other. As you journey through your own challenges, I encourage you to look around and press in to the challenges of other women. Take the time to meet them where they are, and speak truth to one another. When we stand with those who take up for Him, we are impacting far more than our immediate situation - we’re influencing those around us to do the same.
Have you ever stood up for God and experienced opposition? What is the Lord asking you to do today? Who is the Lord asking you to encourage today?
Truly I tell you, whatever you do for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me. Matthew 25:40
About Kara Looney
Kara is a bit outdoorsy with a splash of fancy, a lover of fitness and good food and an advocate of instilling confidence and leadership in our next generation. Business owner, PTA mom, and most importantly, wife and mother to 4. On weekends you can find her and her family family at their Texas ranch, hunting or fishing.