The Conflict of Boldness

Liz Curtis Higgs promotion of her new book, It’s Good to be Queen, caught my attention on twitter. She talked about boldness, and I think the reason it stood out was because I’ve been feeling funny about that word lately, and I haven’t been able to put my finger on the reason. So, of course, I had to watch her video about being bold.

When Liz spoke of her speaking encounter it struck me, that she found that out of 600 women she was speaking too, only 3 raised their hands admitting a desire to be bold. And I wonder if I would have raised my hand. Boldness can feel like such a tricky thing. And Liz’s words are helping me understand the conflict in my own heart.

Liz spoke of the two kinds of boldness. As a person saved by grace, I can live a boldness that comes from the Lord, but I can also live a boldness that comes from my own sinful flesh.

When Liz asked the women she spoke with why (as it seemed) they didn’t want to be bold, they gave answers saying they didn’t want to come across too forward. They didn’t want to make too much of themselves.

And I think as Liz spoke out on this, she identified a fear in my own heart. The reason it’s hard to live in the boldness of Jesus is because I’m afraid people will misunderstand my motives. I’m afraid that people will think I’m living out of the boldness of my own flesh.

It’s easy to justify living in this kind of fear because I can simply tell myself that I’m being humble, but often that’s not the truth at all, and in fact I’m living in fear of what Jesus put on my heart to do. Instead of being humble, I’m avoiding the risk of having people think that I’m not humble.

Perhaps the best ways that the boldness of Jesus will be lived out in me may come out with pieces of my own fleshly motives. And perhaps God is reminding me that the only way I can let His light come through me is by relying on Him in prayer and faith.  

Today I’m challenged to live in prayer and listen to the Spirit. “For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.” (2 Tim. 1:7 NIV) Children of God, may we live in the boldness of the Spirit inside us, embracing the freedom that the Spirit provides from our own flesh. May we live boldness like We Are Found. (Phil. 3:9)

This is Day 2 in 31 Days of Listening

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My prayer is that you find God's grace pouring through your insecure moments. In this audio series, you'll receive a few quiet minutes of encouragement each month free in your email inbox. I hope it helps you find sweet gifts inside the feelings.

Imperfect Yes

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This is a wall plaque that I started making over a year ago – a project I began, not in the house we lived in before this one, but in the apartment we were in before that. I kept the spot empty on the wall waiting for it, and it never got there. I stopped at the point of writing the words on it because I started thinking about how much I disliked my handwriting. I was afraid it would look too imperfect so I kept putting it off.

This week someone told me something that triggered my yes. They confessed to me, that they refrain from doing the things they should because of the fear that they won’t do it well. And God used their confession to bring the question to me: Do I refuse to do things, things that I was meant to do, because of the fear of doing it imperfectly? Yes. Yes, I do it in so many things.

I started listing them in my head, and in the middle of my day I thought of this plaque. I took the marker and scrolled the verse I love in the handwriting I’ve always thought looked as if it was written by a hand much younger and less experienced than my own. I was determined to write it out boldly anyway. I’ve lived so many no’s. This was to be a new firm yes, undeterred by my own imperfections. I finished it and read it back to myself.

He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you for my strength is made perfect in weakness.” Most gladly therefore will I glory in my weaknesses that that that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

There it was: three ‘that’s in a row. I tried to figure out how to fix it, then I decided to leave it as is, and I hung it on the wall anyway. Because… it fits the verse and I suppose it’s an even better reminder this way. It’s my reminder to live the yes – not only despite my imperfections. It’s a reminder to live the yes firmly, and to glory in the imperfections of it, because, like the verse says, my weaknesses are where He shows His glory.

Imperfection is not my intention, but it will happen and the enemy may try to wave it in my face as a threat. But my God has given me the truth that exposes my enemy for the fake he is. The sword he waves at me is as good as a rubber toy. Not only are my imperfections not a threat, they are the very means through which God chooses to show His strength and glory. These threats of imperfection hold no weight because my God created me to be an image bearer, a vessel through which His glory shines greatest in an imperfect yes.

 

I’m linking up with Kate for five-minute Friday. Please give her a visit and enjoy some encouraging words about the word yes. http://katemotaung.com/2015/09/03/five-minute-friday-yes/

My prayer is that you find God's grace pouring through your insecure moments. In this audio series, you'll receive a few quiet minutes of encouragement each month free in your email inbox. I hope it helps you find sweet gifts inside the feelings.