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“I am the vine, you are the branches: He that stays in me, and I in him, the same brings forth much fruit: for without me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5)

Did you know that some of the first words spoken on the moon were the words of Jesus? Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong were still in the lunar module, with radio contact to Houston. Aldrin asked everyone listening back home on Earth, to stop and contemplate the events of the last few hours and to give thanks in their own ways. Then, radio contact was ended. They went into a planned blackout. During the silence, Aldrin opened two small plastic packages that contained communion wine and a bread wafer. He read John 15:5 and took communion. Nasa was embroiled in a legal battle with Madelyn O’Hare, the religion opponent, so it was decided that Buzz should say the words of Jesus and partake of communion in radio blackout, so as not to ruffle anyones feathers. That decision disturbed Aldrin, but he had no choice other than to go along with his superiors calling the shots.

It’s hard to think about the irony of that situation. Here were two men from Earth, visiting on the moon, and God the creator of the men, the planet and the moon, could not be mentioned on the radio.

Do you ever find yourself in a self-imposed radio blackout? Do you not mention God because it may be uncomfortable? The word God is loaded, I know. There is no other word in any language that has so many emotions attached to it. That is no reason to avoid it, however. We mere mortals are the branches of God’s vine. Without God, we can bear no fruit. With God, we can. It’s that simple. Buzz Aldrin knew it. We would do well to know it, and to not be afraid to speak of it.

F.R.O.G. Practice: Today, be aware of the moments you may want to share about God in a conversation but you avoid it out of fear. Can you lean into the fear and not allow it to keep you in “radio blackout?”

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