Confident, enterprising and courageous. That’s how the Oxford dictionary describes “bold”. That’s how the prophets and the apostles were. But, the question is, does that define you? Can you call yourself a “bold” fisherman or fisherwoman? Maybe yes and maybe not. But the great thing is that we can all become one.
1. Become Bold on bent knees
Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness.
Why do you think the disciples in the first century prayed for boldness? They also must have felt intimidated. But it didn’t stop them.
Rather they cried out to God for boldness. Their prayer was specific.
What about us? Do we pray, cry, plead with God to make us bold? Or do we resort to human techniques or human resources only?
Most of us struggle with lack of boldness to a greater or lesser degree.
But do we admit it? To ourselves and to others? Without seeing the need, how can you pray for it?
Sometimes we’re frozen, can’t move, the tongue is stuck, and the mouth is zipped!
In moments like this do you realise that you actually forget God’s presence? The mission, the purpose disappears.
All you can see is a person you just can’t reach out to because of the fear inside.
Fear of rejection, fear of being insulted, of looking funny at the bus stop or shopping center or campus.
Just a moment of hesitation and we end up compromising on our standard. Philip, when he saw the Ethiopian Eunuch heard the spirit urging him and he RAN, not away, but towards the chariot.
The Psalmist (Psalm 138:3) knew that he just needed to call out to God and he could be “bold and stout hearted.”
When I called, you answered me; you made me bold and stouthearted.
Do you know and do that? If you want to be bold, first get on your knees and pray to the God who will tell you “Be strong and courageous for I am with you.”
2. Be Enterprising not Compromising
30 Then Philip ran up to the chariot and heard the man reading Isaiah the prophet. "Do you understand what you are reading?" Philip asked.
31 "How can I," he said, "unless someone explains it to me?" So he invited Philip to come up and sit with him.
How is your evangelism going? Everyday we step out of our houses and we see and meet people. The streets, the buses, the shops, the campus are never empty - especially in the day, right? But what are you doing about it?
Do you let people go without inviting them? Do you make excuses for them in your mind?
We need to be creative in our efforts to evangelise.
The more enterprising we are the more likely God will bless our efforts and we can be fruitful.
Are you discovering new and interesting ways to invite people or are you stuck with the usual?
Every morning a fisherman automatically picks up his nets and heads for the sea.
The bold ones go further away into deeper waters for a bigger catch. When was the last time you did some inspiring and enterprising evangelism? How long has it been since you had a new friend?
3. Be Animated not Intimidated
All who were sitting in the Sanhedrin looked intently at Stephen, and they saw that his face was like the face of an angel.
Stephen was definitely not feeling intimidated – or looking it. Rather, the Bible says his face looked like the face of an angel.
Many times as disciples, we make an attempt at evangelism but we lack confidence, our words are forced, our bodies are stiff. We act as if we are on a secret mission. That person will not feel inspired to follow you into the Kingdom! All you need to have on your heart is “This person is lost and I’m his/her only chance to be saved.”
What helps is knowing that Jesus is looking down on us, urging us to do the right thing.
Do we appear different to people? Are we warm, kind, smiling, confident, inspiring?
Lets go out and be bold when you evangelise.