Our theme for this month: “The Gift of Being Yourself”
Our Bible verse for today: “The wicked flee when no one is pursuing them, but the righteous are bold as a lion.” Proverbs 28:1 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “Don’t be afraid to be bold”
Author Philip Yancey once posed the question: “How would telling people to be nice to one another get a man crucified? What government would execute Mister Rogers or Captain Kangaroo?” Yancey was referring to the fact that if Jesus had simply told everyone to be nice to each other and stopped there, it wouldn’t have been a problem. How could anyone object to that? The problem developed when Jesus kept talking and ended up saying things that people didn’t want to hear. It was spiritual truth, vital truth, but some important and powerful people didn’t want to hear it and by saying it anyway, Jesus put Himself in a dangerous situation that ended up getting Him killed.
One of the biggest hindrances to simply being yourself is fear. We fear what others will think, or what they will say, or what they might do. We fear rejection, opposition, or even persecution. And so, we settle for being like Mr. Rogers or Captain Kangaroo rather than like Jesus. We smile and keep our mouths shut rather than saying the things that need to be said. We hang back and don’t even try rather than risking failure. We’re timid rather than being bold.
One of my favorite men’s Bible study books is “Wild at Heart” by John Eldredge. It addresses this very issue. Too many men today are timid or afraid or withdrawn. It’s a big, bad, and challenging world out there, and so they have checked-out of life and withdrawn into the world of sports, or video games, or television, or substance abuse. It’s safer there. Life is easier there. Women do this too.
But that’s not a valid option for men and women of God. It’s not who God has created us to be. As Solomon wrote in Proverbs 28:1, we’re to be bold as lions. That doesn’t mean that we’re aggressive, obnoxious, pushy, mean, or reckless. It simply means that our faith in Christ gives us the courage we need to face life head-on and to deal boldly with the problems and challenges we’re confronted with.
Don’t be timid, fearful, or withdrawn. That’s not who God created you to be. I encourage you to be bold, as bold as a lion. Jesus was bold, and we’re to be bold too.