Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Living Boldly

     What does it mean to be bold in Christ? Why is it important to be bold? How can you practice boldness in your life? These are questions that I plan on answering in this entry.

     Being bold simply means speaking out against things that wrong no matter what persecution you might face as a result of it. If you are being bold for Christ and doing the next right thing, you can rest assured that He has your back. It's important to note that you can't be bold FOR Christ unless you have confidence IN Christ.

     This means you can't hope for boldness if you aren't reading and understanding God's word. Confidence in His word is equivalent to ammunition in your belt when you need it to make a stand.

     I had an issue with boldness in Christ especially growing up, because I didn't think it was "cool" in front of my friends. I was afraid of being persecuted, or made fun of by my friends. This led to me ignoring things that I knew were wrong. Up to and including me taking my first drink. If I would have had boldness to stand up for what I knew was wrong, things could have been completely different for me.

     Boldness comes natural for some people, and for others it develops over time. Other people have to work on it slowly. I learned this well during my time at John 3:16. There are some people that right out of the gate are bold for Christ. They never miss a chance to stand up and praise Jesus. I think these people tend to be natural extroverts. Anybody that knows me would probably be surprised to learn that I tend to be an introvert until I get to know someone. I just have a need to feel confident about a matter before I can be vocal about it.

     Not only does it pay off to be bold in front of others. It is also helpful to be bold in your prayer life. In prayer, boldness comes in the form of perseverance. I used to think it wasn't OK to continue to pray for the same thing over and over again. I guess I was afraid that it showed a lack of faith in Christ. Hebrews 4:16 says  "So let us keep on coming boldly to the throne of grace, so that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need." In addition to this, we all know that 1 Thessalonians 5:17 tells us to "Pray without Ceasing"
   
     The root of boldness is to know who you are in Christ and what rights you have in the relationship with Him. One of the rights that Jesus won for you at the cross is the freedom to freely enter God's presence without blame, uncertainty, or fear of not being heard. 

     Ephesians 3:12 says, “Because of Christ and our faith in him, we can now come boldly and confidently into God’s presence.” That means Jesus paved the way between us and the throne room of God. Fellowship with Him is part of our covenant rights, so acting unworthy is disrespecting the price Jesus paid to get you there.

      For example, take your house. You're going proudly into your house— knowing it's yours. You're not hesitating. You don't ask if it's yours. You're definitely not going to the back door shaking and thinking, "Oh God, this is a lovely, fine house. Help me, help me now. God, help me, sir, to go into this house with confidence.

     Of course, the devil will work overtime to convince you that you aren't worthy of boldly entering in. He doesn't want you in there, and he certainly doesn't want you making bold requests. But don't let the devil trick you out of coming boldly to the throne — it's where you belong.

     When the bible calls us to be missionaries, it doesn't mean going to Africa. The man standing in line in front of you at Starbucks is just as important as the people in remote countries. Yes, these types of situations could lead to persecution, but if we aren't being persecuted for our beliefs, what are we doing? Just remind yourself about Paul, and what we went through. He was proclaiming Christ with boldness even while chained up and bleeding. The worst you have to worry about is some funny looks.

     When in doubt, don't forget to simply pray for boldness. Here are 10 verses about boldness and courage that will help you along your way.

    Psalm 27:1
    Ezekiel 3:7-11
    Joshua 1:9
    2 Timothy 1:6-7
    Ephesians 3:11-13
    Ephesians 3:16
    Ephesians 6:18-20
    Hebrews 13:5-6
    Philippians 1:14
    Philippians 4:13

I challenge everyone here to just set a goal for yourself to talk to at least 1 stranger about Christ each day. You might surprise yourself out how quickly you will find that boldness. It gets a little easier each time.