Acts 4:29-31 (NKJV)
29 Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word,
30 by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus.”
31 And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.
Boldness is the courage to act or speak fearlessly, despite real or imagined dangers. When a person acts boldly, he or she takes action regardless of risks. A petite mother will boldly snatch her child’s hand away from a six-foot stranger. A man may boldly stand up to a dictatorial boss, knowing he could be fired for doing so. Boldness is not to be confused with rashness or aggressiveness. It is, however, similar to assertiveness in that it empowers someone to do or speak what is necessary, in spite of the possibility of a negative outcome.
Boldness was one of the first characteristics imparted by the Holy Spirit when it filled believers after Jesus ascended into heaven. The followers of Jesus had been hiding in fear of the Jewish authorities, praying and encouraging one another. Then the Holy Spirit came upon them, and those formerly terrified disciples became fearless preachers. A short time later, as the disciples faced persecution from the authorities, they prayed for boldness. Their prayer was answered, and they were filled with the Holy Spirit and “spoke the word with boldness”. God gives us boldness when our objective is to obey and glorify Him with it.
If we want to see a move of God like the early church saw then we need to pray like they prayed. Not just pray as much as they prayed, but to also pray for the things they prayed for.
When the church was under attack they were not praying for God’s provision or even His protection, they prayed for the boldness to preach His Word.
As followers of Christ, we should pray as Paul did that the Lord will grant us supernatural boldness to speak and live as He would have us do. In this age of great deception and resistance to truth, we need boldness more than ever. Boldness, coupled with love and humility, is like a light in the darkness. When we are convinced that our message is life-giving and eternal, we can speak with boldness, knowing that God will use it to impact our world.
Pray for boldness, then go shine a light in your world this week.