Day 11 – October 20, 2012 – 40-Day Spiritual Journey

BOLDNESS USHERS IN BREAKTHROUGHS

READ Acts 4: 18-28

REFLECT

Ever been in that awkward place, sitting in front of someone who is suffering, but you feel helpless? Maybe you even feel like you can’t really speak into his situation?
I’ve been there. I have a friend who went through a really difficult divorce recently. We talked about it at length, but I found myself shrinking away from really dealing with the issue spiritually. I thought “If Jason (not his real name) was a Christian, I would pray with him.” In fact, I really didn’t do anything ‘spiritual’ because I kept thinking “Because Jason isn’t a Christian, there is nothing I can do except pray privately, try to empathize and help him out with projects around his house.”

Investing in your friends and even inviting them to church or into a relationship with Christ takes some courage. More courage than I had in that situation.

How might it have played out differently? Well, I could have talked more about what I had seen and heard in my own experience of God. I could have shared more of my story. My faith in Christ, for example, has given me peace, strength, and even freedom from worry. I could have told him more about that.

Contrast my response with what happened in the early church. In Acts 4, after Peter and John had been tried by the Jewish rulers, elders and teachers of the law, they were commanded with threats of punishment not to speak any more in the name of Jesus. They replied that “…we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard”. The author of Acts records that the place where they were meeting was shaken after their prayer for boldness. God sent a sign to assure them their prayer had been heard. And then the apostles were filled with the Holy Spirit and “spoke the word of God boldly.” It was that boldness that ushered in breakthroughs in the early church.

In light of that, surely I could have been more bold.

BOTTOM LINE

Boldness ushers in breakthroughs.

LIVE

When we feel helpless in the face of someone else’s need, the power and the ability to be bold comes from the Holy Spirit. Why not talk about the difference Jesus has made in your life? Why not pray for the boldness to ask the person in front of you if they would like you to pray now?

PRAY

Pray for the boldness to enable you to talk about what you have seen and heard.

Carey Nieuwhof

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