Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Boldness in Witness

June 3: Tuesday of the 7th week of Easter
A thought for those who want to reveal the risen Jesus in their lifestyle.

Acts 20:17-27; Psalm 68:10-11, 20-21; John 17:1-11

“I consider life of no importance to me, if only I may… bear witness to the Gospel of God’s grace.” Acts 20:24

The Gift of the Spirit gave Paul “boldness” to “bear witness” to the Good News of Jesus Christ. We experience the Gift of the Spirit when we speak in a way that expresses, or act in a way that embodies, the attitudes and values of Jesus; especially when we are afraid of the reaction we may provoke.

We shouldn't be simplistic. If we sense people will misunderstand what we say or do, or that they are just too closed-up to hear the message, we might be less direct. Jesus said not to “cast pearls” uselessly in front of people who will just “trample them under foot and turn and maul you” (Matthew 7:6). It is love not to lay on people things they aren't prepared for. But we should be motivated by love, not fear. The “Gift of the Spirit” helps us overcome fear, and we experience the gift when we do.

This might be something as ordinary as making the Sign of the Cross in public. Who says it’s not “politically correct”? If people are free to express their disrespect in front of us by saying “Jesus Christ!” as a swearword, we are free to respond by expressing our respect in front of them. Freedom is a two-way street.

PRAY: “Lord, let your Spirit speak in me and through me.”

PRACTICE: Act against fear.

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