To Boldly Go…
Pray for me, that the power to speak may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel” Ephesians 6:19 (MEV)
All of you baby boomers out there will remember the 1960’s series Star Trek.
Each episode would start with Captain Kirk played by William Shatner saying “Space ,the final frontier. These are the voyages of the Starship Enterprise. It’s 5-year mission: to explore new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to Boldly go where no man has gone before.”
The crew of the Enterprise put their lives in danger and risked everything to pursue other civilizations.Not unlike the apostle Paul who traveled all over the known world of his day to help establish the early church. He, too, risked everything to preach the gospel and write most of the New Testament.
When I think of Paul, I’m immediately reminded of that fateful moment on the road to Damascus in Acts 9. Before his encounter with Jesus, Paul believed he was acting boldly to defend the Jewish ways against what he considered to be heresy, “still breathing out threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord.” In reality, Paul was filled with false pride and unwarranted bravado. I believe it was only after Damascus that he truly LIVED HIS LIFE BOLDLY.
Every January I ask God to bring me a new word to guide me throughout the year. This past January, God led me to my “one word” for 2022 – that word was BOLD. I use this one word to simplify and focus my year ahead.
If you’ve never started this practice, I highly encourage it as God will use your word as a light and a mirror for a year of discovery. By listening to God’s voice, your eyes will be opened to a “God word” not just a “good word.”
“Bold” is not exactly a personality trait, but rather a description of an action we take or an emotion we feel. She “acted boldly in speaking up” is more descriptive than simply saying “she’s bold.”
God desires our actions and thoughts and words to be bold, rather than meek. I believe this lies at the heart of Jesus’ criticism of the church in Laodicea from Chapter 3 in the Book of Revelation when he says “I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other!” (Revelation 3:15)
It may surprise you to know the word “bold” is used in scripture over 30 times to describe deeds or words – from Genesis, through Numbers, Joshua, 1st and 2nd Chronicles, Job, the Psalms, Proverbs, The Song of Solomon, Ezekiel, Daniel, Acts, Romans, 2nd Corinthians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, 1st Thessalonians, Philemon, and 2nd Peter. Clearly, “boldness” is important!
God calls us to live out our Faith in this way, but how do we do that? A few things come immediately to mind:
- Talk about your faith openly and authentically (2 Timothy 4:2-5)
- Show your faith in your actions not just your words (James 2:18)
- Know you have the Holy Spirit within you (that is by invitation) – God uses ordinary people to do extraordinary things through the Holy Spirit (Ezekiel 36:27)
It’s true that God doesn’t call us all to be pastors, speakers, or writers. But sometimes, having bold faith is simply being a discerning ear to someone you hardly know, or being kind to someone who may not reciprocate, or forgiving someone who you believe doesn’t deserve your forgiveness.
Whether it’s through your words or through your actions, know that God is with you, and He will give you strength and courage to live a life in bold faith that you could never experience through your own strength and ability!
May God continuously lead your path