Thursday, March 15, 2018

B.O.L.D.

14 But Jesus the Son of God is our great High Priest who has gone to heaven itself to help us; therefore let us never stop trusting him. 15 This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses since he had the same temptations we do, though he never once gave way to them and sinned. 16 So let us come boldly to the very throne of God and stay there to receive his mercy and to find grace to help us in our times of need. (Hebrews 4:14-16 TLB)

We need to be bold in our faith - bold believers through and through. I know there are times when we face uncertainties and somehow all our boldness flies out the window like some vapor ascending into the unknown. If we are be 100% truthful here, we ALL need a little lesson in boldness! Why? We get doubt in the driver's seat and faith merely becomes a passenger. Passengers don't control the car - although they may try to tell you where to turn, stop, or what's just around the bend, you are under absolutely no obligation to heed their advice. You are driving. Boldness isn't about us driving, but us being willing to allow another to drive us!

BOLDNESS isn't about us having it all together - it sometimes about us recognizing we actually don't have all the pieces in order. It isn't going to hurt us to admit we struggle with boldness - it will only hurt us when we refuse to be honest about our struggles in areas of BELIEF, OBEDIENCE, LEARNING, OR DISCIPLINE.

BELIEF might just be the starting place for boldness to begin to blossom in our lives because every action has some basis of belief behind it. We almost take for granted some of the stuff we believe, but have come to trust in fully. We don't think twice about our next breath most of the time because we just trust it will be there - until one day we find ourselves plunged into icy cold water through a crack in the ice and have to hold our breath until we can find our way to surface again! We don't want to take for granted where we put our trust, do we? We want assurances our trust is well-placed, yet when we take for granted anything (or anyone) we place our trust in, we create an environment where we are just assuming upon the 'good graces' of that person or object. Boldness begins in recognizing God's graces are always to be trusted, but never to be taken for granted.

OBEDIENCE is not an outcome of boldness - it is the outcome of belief. The one who understands where his trust is placed is determined to align his actions with the one he has given his allegiance to by such an alignment. Heart, mind, and body - aligned perfectly so as to take actions based upon trustworthy evidence. Obedience is more than conformity - it is inward strength in action even when outward circumstances don't seem to paint the picture we might want to see. What we believe determines how we stand when asked to go any other way than that which grace would pull us. 

LEARNING is an inward expression of our belief. To learn, one has to trust either the one doing the teaching, or the subject being taught. I don't know why I trusted my elementary school teachers when they told me one apple plus another one apple will yield me two apples, but I did. Before my eyes, I saw one shiny red apple and then another. In my mind I thought those amazingly crisp and juicy objects were good eating! I didn't care why one plus one equaled two, but trusted that more than one apple in the bowl was a very good thing! You see, we don't always question what we learn when we trust the one doing the teaching so very well!

DISCIPLINE is the outcome of having solid beliefs, a committed heart of obedient service, and an open heart to being taught the truths that will keep us safe in life. Discipline is merely focus - it is determined action that won't allow an opportunity for wavering. Nothing bespeaks boldness better than an unwavering ability to stand. Just sayin!