Thursday, 24 July 2008

Living Boldly…

I’m reading the book of Acts at present, as well as studying it through my daily devotional, and the word “bold” keeps standing out. The Macquarie Dictionary defines bold as “not hesitating in the face of actual or possible danger or rebuff” and also “not hesitating to breach the rules of propriety.” The Apostles certainly were bold considering these definitions! They did not hesitate in the face of danger when you consider they experienced the rebuke of the Pharisees and endured time in jail. And as far as actual physical danger goes, many lost their lives, like Stephen, who became the first Christian martyr. What strength and what courage!

After pondering this, I gleaned that the lesson here is that we all must be “speaking freely and fearlessly and boldly in the Lord…” – Acts 14:3 (AMP). We must be bold even with the threat of danger or rebuff. So how does one do this? How does one become bold in the Lord?

Let’s look at Stephen; he was bold. He was “a man of faith and of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 6:5), and “a man full of God’s grace and power” (Acts 6:8). He was also full of wisdom (Acts 6:10); so much so that the members of the Synagogue of the Freedmen could not stand up against him because he was so bold. They concocted untruths about him, which resulted in Stephen being brought before the Sanhedrin and put to death by stoning after infuriating them greatly while giving his speech recounting events from the Old Testament that glorified God and our Lord Jesus Christ.

You could say that Stephen’s speech was his one last hoorah (defined as “final moment or occasion of glory or achievement” from for God, but what an amazingly powerful hoorah that was! Standing there boldly speaking God’s word to the very men who demanded the crucifixion of Jesus. It’s no wonder that Stephen’s face shone like an angel (Acts 6:15); he was filled with the power of the Holy Spirit! He was free, fearless and bold!

The key here - the Almighty Enabler, you could say - is the Holy Spirit. As I go about my daily life, and deal with the struggles and temptations of the world, I must call on the Holy Spirit so I can be bold!

I am a woman of faith and have been baptised and filled with the Holy Spirit who enables me to be full of grace, power and wisdom. This means that I am to speak freely, fearlessly and boldly in the Lord! I must share my faith, share God’s love, and most importantly share why I am a Christian; telling of what Jesus did for me and His love for me. I am also to share that this is obtained by having a close relationship with Him that is deepened by prayer and meditation on His word that then enables me to live a joyful and rich life, and a life lived boldly!

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