I’m pleased to welcome my friend Holly Barrett to the #BeBoldGirl series. Holly has a sweet spirit and a wise heart, and I hope her encouragement to speak up boldly blesses you today. Welcome, Holly!
It was time for my annual review. Expecting nothing new, you can imagine my surprise when the one thing my supervisor asked me to do was to speak up more often in our team meetings. Me? Speak up more often? That’s not something others usually ask of me!
Nevertheless, she felt that I expressed my opinions or ideas readily enough but when there was push back, I shut down. And she was right. Giving her comments consideration, I remembered a number of situations where expressing my strongly held beliefs felt like running my head into a brick wall…as if no one was listening or took me seriously. I don’t know about you, but I’m only going to run headlong into a brick wall so many times. I might be a slow learner but eventually, I’ll start avoiding what causes pain!
In Acts 4, we find Peter and John arrested for boldly speaking God’s truth. They were held overnight and the next day appeared in front of the Jerusalem council. After being questioned and threatened, Peter and John were released. They returned to their friends, told them what happened, and the whole group lifted their voices in prayers of thanksgiving. But in that prayer is this interesting request,
And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness… Acts 4:29 ESV
Here the disciples are praying to continue speaking God’s truth in boldness. After being arrested and staying overnight in jail. After being questioned about all they have been preaching. After being threatened before being released. And they are praying for more boldness.
I’m not sure I have even enough boldness to pray that prayer. But I want to.
I want to be sure enough of God’s truth to boldly proclaim it.
I want to be confident in the ideas and opinions that He gives me to boldly present them.
And I want to trust in Him enough to believe He is backing me up when I meet opposition.
So that supervisor’s comments have an even wider application. It’s not just in work situations that I need to be bold. Anytime my convictions are strong in any particular situation, I need to be willing to stand up for them and not shut down. Speaking boldly is not always easy…and there might even be repercussions to doing so…but I have to wonder how strongly I feel about something if I’m not willing to defend it boldly.
So this is my prayer: Lord, grant to me the ability to continue speaking your word with all boldness. Not timidly. Not with half-confidence. But with ALL boldness.
Maybe you need to pray that same prayer. Are there situations where you find yourself backing down? Or do you have some encouragement to give those of us who need to be bolder? There’s strength and comfort in numbers…so I’ll be praying this for all of you as well!
Holly Barrett is a Jesus girl, a mother, writer, podcaster, and Director of Communications for a non-profit agency. She answers to YaYa to her three gorgeous grandchildren. Holly loves to encourage her community to live in the redemption found in Jesus everyday. Holly is the co-author of Gray Hair Talking, found on Amazon. She writes at Reclaiming a Redeemed Life and podcasts most weeks on Living a Redeemed Life. You can also connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.