Boldness; June 13, 2021

Psalms 6:8-9 Away from me, all you who do evil,
for the Lord has heard my weeping.
The Lord has heard my cry for mercy;
the Lord accepts my prayer.

We don’t know what gave David this assurance that he had been heard, but whatever it was impacted him greatly. The thing is, he had to have fairly strong faith to have interpreted it as God speaking to him. Current secular society, and certainly the current school system, actively teach us not to interpret anything as God’s action toward us. What a loss! We can certainly see the hand of the devil in that, because the last thing he wants is for people to have an active awareness of their Creator. When we know we are hearing from Him and that He hears us, then we are very bold, just as David is here. There are various kinds of boldness, and some are very stupid, because they rely on false premises. However, there’s no substitute for the calm assurance that “God’s got this, and He can use me in the process.” That’s what John wrote about. “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us–whatever we ask–we know that we have what we asked of him.” (1 John 5:14-15) The point is to be actively pressing in toward God, to know Him better so that we may know His will better, and thus pray and act in line with that. Often that will require that we lay down whatever we want, just as Jesus did in the Garden of Gethsemane, (Luke 22:42) but the closer we walk with Him, the more likely we are to want what He wants in the first place. That gives us an assurance that the world cannot touch, even if in the short term it leads to martyrdom. It was said of the early Christians, “They really know how to love each other, and they really know how to die.” When our faith is clear and strong, then we know that “Our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” (2 Corinthians 4:17)

I have experienced the stupid boldness of conceit, and I have also tasted the boldness of complete assurance of God. Believe me, there’s no comparison, even though from the outside they might look similar. I am reminded of the hymn, It Is Well with my Soul. The author/ composer experienced extreme loss and heartache, but his faith, the assurance of God’s presence and love, carried him through. That’s the kind of boldness I want, not based on me or my circumstances but on my Father who loves me, even when He’s leading me through rough times.

Father, for some reason I’m reminded of what Melvin Bradshaw said about my father after he visited him in the hospital the day before the surgery that took my father home to you: “I never saw a man with more reason to live, or more ready to die.” That’s how I want to live, with complete assurance in You, whatever You have planned for me. Help me indeed have the bold faith that comes from being at rest in Christ Jesus my Lord, for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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