Mark 2:6-12 Now some teachers of the law were sitting there, thinking to themselves, ‘‘Why does this fellow talk like that? He’s blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone?’’ Immediately Jesus knew in his spirit that this was what they were thinking in their hearts, and he said to them, ‘‘Why are you thinking these things? Which is easier: to say to the paralytic, 'Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, 'Get up, take your mat and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins. . . .’’ He said to the paralytic, ‘‘I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.’’ He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God, saying, ‘‘We have never seen anything like this!’’

Jesus didn’t walk on eggshells when he was around those who opposed him. He didn’t bother to change his wording or his teaching style to please the religious leaders of his day. He called it like he saw it, by the authority of God, and with no fear of the potential opposition that he could stir up. In contrast, we are often so careful not to offend anyone that no frankness and no power is left in our speech. Jesus said: ‘‘Woe to you when all men speak well of you. . .’’ If we try hard to please everybody, the odds are good that we will have little or no impact on anybody. We need instead to be constantly ready to withstand opposition, and we should not try to avoid the confrontations that will certainly occur as we make our stand.