Boldness and Me
One of the things that I have been learning about throughout the support raising process is boldness. What is boldness? What does it look like to be bold? Where does boldness come from? How do I become bold? Whether sharing the Gospel, standing up for what is right, or asking someone to support my ministry, boldness is something that I have always struggled with. By God’s grace, I am being sanctified in this area through this season of building a support team.
It is impossible to build a team of ministry supporters without being bold. I have learned the importance of opening up and sharing my heart for the UW and my calling into full-time ministry. It is also crucial to share with boldness what God has been doing in the U-District and what our church believes He is calling us to do to continue reaching people. I need boldness to show people the need for Jesus in the U-District and how I, and more importantly the church, fit into the solution. It is easier for people to support me just because they know me, but I want people to support me because they believe in the church and its mission. That requires boldness on my to both trust in what God has called our church to do and to share that with others. Lastly, it takes boldness to ask people to support and give to the mission. It is nerve-racking to ask people for money. I really need to believe that God is calling me to work in full-time ministry and that He is calling people to support the mission to the U-District.
“Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished… ‘And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness.’ … And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God with boldness.” Acts 4:13, 29, 31
Boldness and Peter
Acts chapter 4 is a great example of Peter acting in boldness. Only a short while earlier, Peter was so lacking in boldness that he denied that he knew Christ to a young girl (Matthew 26). By Acts 4, he speaks before a group of priests and Sadducees who were “greatly annoyed” and consequently, he was arrested. What changed between these two instances? Did he take a class on how to be bold? Did he memorize all the scriptures and thus was able to refute what the Sadducees were saying? Was it believing that he could be bold that made him bold? The Bible says that the priests and Sadducees “perceived that [Peter and John] were uneducated, common men”. It must have been something outside of him that made Peter stand up to the priests and Sadducees. The answer can be found in verse 8, “Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit…” The reason that Peter was able to act with such boldness was that he was filled with the Holy Spirit.
Boldness and the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit works through us to accomplish things we cannot do on our own. The Holy Spirit intercedes for us (Rom. 8:26-27), guides us to the truth (John 16:13-14), give us power (Acts 1:8), and sanctifies us (1 Peter 1:2). Throughout the support raising process, I am learning about how the Holy Spirit gives me boldness just as he did with Peter in Acts. God is showing me that I need to get beyond trying hard on my own to be bold and submit to the work of the Holy Spirit. Mark says, “…for it is not you who speak, but the Holy Spirit” (Mark 13:11). Boldness does not come from me believing in myself but trusting in God; trusting that he will fulfill what he has called me to and trusting in power the of the Holy Spirit to work in me.
“Boldness” is a biblical word. That means God defines it. We are not bold witnesses when we think we’re being bold; we are bold witnesses when God thinks we’re being bold, when God looks down on us and turns to the angel Gabriel and says, “Gabriel, look at those guys. Now that’s what I call bold!” –Ray Ortlund