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How to Be Bold [When You Don’t Feel Like It]

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Is the Lord calling you to step out in faith, but fear is holding you back? Do you desire learn how to be bold and to profess boldly your faith to others, only to find yourself tongue-tied and fumbling for the right words? 

Let’s face it. The world gives us plenty of reasons to keep our opinions to ourselves, to remain silent.

In a culture where men and women of faith are increasingly being canceled, the Lord challenges us to speak his word with boldness, courage, and confidence. 

Is it possible to be bold when we don’t feel bold? The answer is, “Yes!”

“In the day when I cried out, You answered me, And made me bold with strength in my soul.” Psalms 138:3 (NKJV)

What is Boldness?

Learning to be bold takes practice. While some people were born with boldness pulsing through their veins, most of us cower at the thought of confrontation.

If we are going to learn to boldly represent our faith in Jesus, we will first need to understand its meaning.

Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary defines bold/boldness as fearless before danger: Intrepid (characterized by resolute fearlessness, fortitude, and endurance); showing or requiring a fearless daring spirit; assured, confident.

The Biblical definition in the Greek as found in the Vine’s Expository Dictionary is defined as parrhēsia: all outspokenness that is frankness, bluntness publicity, boldness of speech, confidence, freely, openly, plainly.

Another Greek word is tharrhēo, meaning “to be warm, warm of temperament, to be bold, boldly have confidence, be confident.”

From the sounds of it, we could all use a little more boldness right about now.

Living fearlessly is not something we need to muster up through sheer will and determination. The Lord will strengthen us and encourage us for that which he calls us.

Here are some suggestions to help you step out in bold faith as you seek to fulfill the Lord’s calling for your life. 

We Can Pray and ask God to Learn How to be Bold!

Ask the Lord to give you boldness in the face of opposition.

People may not believe or even want to hear about your faith in Jesus. That is where you will need to pray and ask the Lord to help you boldly proclaim the gospel.

Peter and John, after being released from jail for preaching about Jesus, prayed for boldness for the believers.

“Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness.” Acts 4:29 (NIV)

“praying at all times in the Spirit, with prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel,” Ephesians 6:18-19 (ESV)

quote prayer in private results in boldness in public in pink on whiteoverlay with three different imageson the bottom-wotship hands, bible, and white woman with her hands clapsed, praying, to symbolize how to be bold

The Word of God Helps Us to Be Bold

When we know and understand the teachings of the Bible, it is easier to share them.

The Lord brings his word to life in us. At just the right moment, he brings to our remembrance the message of hope to share with those who need to hear it. 

Paul reminded Timothy of the increased godlessness that would occur in the last days. He warned his young disciple that people would be, “lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power.” (See 2 Timothy 3:1-5)

Sounds like signs of our times, right? To withstand the onslaught of evil, we are facing now and in the days ahead, we will need to know the truth as written in the Bible.

“All Scripture is breathed out of by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (ESV)

“We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ,” 2 Corinthians 10:5 (ESV)

How to be Bold? Jesus Gives Us Boldness

There comes a point in every believer’s life where they encounter the authentic person of Jesus Christ.

Through Jesus, we can come boldly into the presence of God. When we meet him face to face, we want to tell everyone about him. 

“Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:14-16 (ESV)

“This was according to the eternal purpose that he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in him.” Ephesians 3:11-12 (ESV)

The Holy Spirit Empowers Us with Boldness

Sharing our faith with those who adamantly oppose the mere mention of the name of Jesus can make us tremble in our boots.

It’s easy to back down, make excuses, and save the conversation for a later date. The Lord sent his Spirit to empower us to speak his word with authority and confidence. It is not our job to convince the world to accept Jesus as their Savior. It is the Holy Spirit’s role to draw them to himself. We have only to share the message of salvation with those we encounter and leave the rest to him. 

“After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.” Acts 4:31 (NIV)

“For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self -discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7 (NIV)

God’s Love Makes Us Bold

Are you grateful for God’s love? His love draws us into his presence, into a relationship with him.

Our enemy points his finger at us, condemns us, shames us, and reminds us of our failures.

Not Jesus. 

Jesus’ love draws us in, even when others reject us. This love is something we feel compelled to share with the lost, those who have never experienced the unconditional love, mercy, and grace of our Lord.  

“This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.”  1 John 4:17-18 (NIV)

“Therefore, although in Christ I could be bold and order you to do what you ought to do, yet I prefer to appeal to you on the basis of love.” Philemon 1:8a (NIV)

Just Do It – Be Bold

What do you have to lose?

While being bold is not without its challenges, striving for it is well worth it.

God has divine appointments, holy encounters, waiting for us to share his love and promise of salvation with those who don’t know him.

We can trust him to put his words in our mouths as we speak hope and healing to a world that needs to receive him as their Lord and Savior.

“The wicked flee though no one pursues, but the righteous are as bold as a lion.” Proverbs 28:1 (NIV)

“So we can confidently say, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?’” Hebrews 13:6 (ESV)

“Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have boldness to enter the sanctuary through the blood of Jesus…let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed in pure water. Let us hold on to the confession of our hope without waver, since he who promised is faithful.” Hebrews 10:19, 22 (CSB)

“Blessed are you when people hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven.” Luke 6:22-23a (NIV)

“I will contend with those who contend with you…” Isaiah 49:25b (NIV)

 

A Prayer for Learning How to Be Bold

Dear Jesus, 

We come to you praying that you will fill us with a boldness that comes only from you. May we not shrink back in sharing the hope of your gospel with others because of fear or because we lack confidence. Because of your great love for us, we desire to share that love with those who don’t know you. We boldly come to your throne to find mercy and assurance of faith in our time of need. We accept persecution as a blessing, knowing that our reward awaits us in heaven. Thank you for your faithfulness to give us the right words at the right moment. May they be words of life to those who need them. In Jesus’ name. Amen. 

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