My senior year in college I was selected to join a senior seminar called “Leadership in America.” Fifteen other students had been chosen for the class because of the different groups they represented on campus. For example, in our class we had the student body president, the founder of the Feminist Group, an individual who wrote a much ridiculed conservative column for the school newspaper, a cheerleader and a guy in ROTC. As you can imagine this eclectic group of people were never scared of voicing their opinions and each class led to a heated debate.
One day our professor asked us to name individuals we deemed as great leaders. Instantly, obvious names like, “Kennedy, FDR, and Churchill” were named. Then one guy, who usually didn’t say much, meekly said, “Jesus Christ.” Without missing a beat, the majority of the class stopped and argued that Jesus Christ was not a great leader. I remember sitting there in disbelief as I listened to some of my classmates simplify Christ’s life and call him nothing but a mystical figure or common teacher. While others simply laughed at the idea of Christ even being mentioned along with real gods like Kennedy and Churchill.
Now, I wish I could tell you that at this point, I stood up and rebuked my classmates and testified of the divinity of Christ. Unfortunately, instead of standing up, I hid. I had grown up learning about Christ, I attended church and tried to follow what He taught, but I couldn’t proclaim a sentence of belief. It wasn’t that I was afraid of my classmates, but more that I had nothing to say.
I’ll never forget this small test God put before me and how miserably I failed that day. Fortunately, my failure drove me to find an answer, and after college, I found my voice and testimony. I will always be grateful to that quiet boy who had the courage to speak the truth.