Acts 4:18 And they called them, and commanded them not to speak at all nor to teach in the name of Jesus. 19 But Peter and John answered and said unto them, "Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more that God judge ye. 20 For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard. 

Shout It Out Loud

Way back in 1975 I was a member of a gang (the Bonanza Gang).  The only qualification for being a member was to work at Bonanza. The initiation process included but was not limited to getting hit in the face by the swinging kitchen door, and being locked in the cooler.  In March of that year, we all loaded up to go to the KISS concert in Memphis. Even though I was seventeen at the time my mother did not like the idea of her baby "going to another state with strangers."  The manager and his wife took us so all in all I was in good hands. 

I didn't know that much about the band, but the idea of going to a concert was exciting.  The one memory that sticks with me most from the actual concert was not the shock from all the bizarre costumes, but of singing Shout it Out Loud out loud with thousands of voices.  To a normally shy little girl, this was a liberating experience.  I found I could shout out loud in this huge crowd and not have even one person look at me with disgust.  There was no right or wrong way, we just shouted. I found freedom.

Monday morning while watching Kathy Lee on the Today Show this shouting experience from forty years ago came to mind.  You see Kathy was doing a little shouting without even raising her voice and thousands heard what she had to say. While thanking everyone for their condolences in the passing of her husband Frank she discussed his faith.   She said Frank accepted JESUS into his heart when he was a little boy and she was sure he was with the Lord now and she was hoping to be reunited with him one day.  Kathy said that Christianity is based on faith, forgiveness, and hope.  She then actually gave an "invitation" live on air.  "If you are hurting and feeling hopeless today Christianity may be the answer for you, as a matter of fact I KNOW it is the answer."  WOW!   

Initially, I was shocked, followed by a shock that I was shocked. Forty years ago would I have been shocked to hear the name of Jesus on the Today Show?  Even twenty years ago would I have been surprised?  In this country, our minds are slowly being molded into thinking that it is not acceptable to shout (even mention) the name of JESUS.   There are so many wanting their rights that the rights of Christians have not only been forgotten but are beginning to be denied. 

Yes, KISS might have contributed a little to the steady decline of Christianity in this Christian nation, but today a memory of them helped to remind me I still have the right to shout the name of JESUS and should be doing so every chance I get.  There is forgiveness and hope in JESUS. Shout it out Loud. Don't worry if you are doing it right. Have faith.  Jesus brings freedom.