Saturday, September 26, 2015

Boldness

The book of Second Kings tells us the prophet Elisha was visited on his deathbed by Joash, king of Israel. Elisha told Joash to smite the ground with his arrows to represent the Lord's upcoming deliverance of the Israelites from Syria.  Joash did as he was told three times and then stopped.  Elisha was very disappointed and told him he should have smitten five or six times.
Galatians 4:18 says, "It is good to be zealously affected always in a good thing."  God's plan for me is not for me to quietly tip-toe through life, accepting wrongs and unfavorable circumstances without trying to change or improve them and whispering in a lackadaisical manner, "Que sera, sera; whatever will be will be."  No! I must face life and its challenges with zest and vitality.

Jesus became a man so he could experience life as we know it. He knows all our frustrations.  When I first started captaining my online chess team, I wasn't the most understanding person. I was a nice person, but I lived strictly by the rules and expected others to do the same without making mistakes. 
Now five years later, I still hold a high standard; but it's much easier to understand the shortcomings of others and to be gracious. Why?  Because I've been through or seen nearly everything myself and have made my own mistakes. Jesus, the captain of our salvation, went through everything Himself; He knows what it's like to be human.  Although He is perfect, He understands our weaknesses.

Hebrews 4:16 says, "Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need."  There will be many times when we don't know what to do. Sometimes we'll make the wrong decisions.  Sometimes we'll be confused. It's hard, perhaps foolish, to be bold when we're confused. It's nearly impossible to be bold when we don't know what to do. 
But God is not the author of confusion.  He is the Author of peace. God doesn't want us to languish in the land of confusion.  He wants us to walk out of our mental turmoil into His marvelous light.  Boldness comes when we have peace with God and know we are in the will of God.

"Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God." --Romans 5:1-2

"Peace is not the absence of trouble, but the presence of Jesus."  --Sheila Walsh
Linking with:
The Enchanting Rose

26 comments:

  1. Bethany your post is lovely/ The red flower amazing. Have a great sunday. Love from cloudy and rainy Europe..

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    1. Thanks Gosia! Glad you are finally getting some rain!

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    2. Great post, Bethany!

      By the way, sorry I'm replying to a reply . . . for some reason my computer hasn't been enabling me to comment on your posts. It's gotten to be rather frustrating, as I wanted to comment on a few others, too. Hopefully this problem will be fixed soon!

      Hope you've been having an enjoyable fall season thus far!
      God Bless :-)

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    3. Hi Cryslyn, thanks for letting me know. I wonder what is causing the problem. I wasn't able to comment on my own posts either from my Chrome browser for a while, but I could comment fine from Firefox. Now Chrome seems to work again for me at least. What browser do you use? And do you have problems with only one browser, or all browsers?

      Thanks and God bless!

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  2. it is difficult when we hold high standards for ourselves and others. love the hollyhocks.

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    1. Perhaps, but the alternative to holding a high standard for oneself would be very difficult to live with.

      As for holding high standards for others, I generally don't unless I'm responsible for them (as captain of my online chess team, it's my job to hold my players to a high standard). People in general are not-so-great imo, so holding a high standard for people in general would be extremely frustrating and disappointing. For the most part, I consider it none of my business what others do and think, and I'm pleasantly surprised when I meet a decent person of integrity with class and high standards of his/her own.

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  3. These are all true, and I appreciate you posting them. Each one made me contemplate it.
    I love the bird photo!

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  4. I did enjoy the post, but have never wanted to be a leader..afraid I would disappoint. Both others and Myself.

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    1. We don't all have to be leaders; we just have to boldly follow the right leader, Jesus. There's a song "Wherever He Leads, I'll Go."

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  5. Good evening, dear Bethany. Thank you for sharing this fabulous post with us. I appreciated the words of wisdom, my friend. I remember hearing a Pastor once say that it's easy to pray for boldness, but we have to actually take the leap and be bold in Christ :) Thanks for the reminder!

    Have a blessed Sunday! Hugs

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    1. Well said by the pastor. Blessings to you!

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  6. This year I picked the word "glory" as a work to especially contemplate as I read through Scripture, and Romans 5:1-2 that you quoted is another I am adding to my spiral index card collection. Thanks for sharingxx

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    1. A collection of verses sounds like a good collection to me! Romans 5:1-2 is good! I memorized it once--as a matter of fact, I think I still have it memorized. :)

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  7. Gorgeous captures! I love the hollyhocks. I wish you a peaceful Sunday.

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  8. Beautiful post Bethany! I love the way you shared your chess captain experience as a way to explain how Jesus became man for us and experienced our earthly frustrations just like us. So inspirational you young wise Gal you. Just love it.

    And the photos captivate and add so much loveliness. Thanks for sharing. xoxo

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  9. Another beautiful post, Bethany, not to mention another set of spectacular images!

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  10. I do like that Ladybird (or bug, as I think you would say!)

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

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    1. We have plenty of them around here! When the soybeans are harvested there will most likely be ladybugs everywhere.

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  11. This was an encouraging post! And the photos are great, as always!

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  12. Hi Bethany, You sure have a wonderful way of putting things into perspective as you share your views. I admire that ... it is not an easy thing to do. Another excellent post here! By the way, one of the comments mentions issues with Chrome and you said you had some yourself. I had been using Windows 8.1 so I got the free upgrade to Windows 10. For a couple of weeks I had no computer issues what so ever and really found Windows 10 to be the best ever. Then, for some unknown reason, I suddenly started having problems with Chrome (my default browser). Pages would become unresponsive. I tried several things but did not get a good fix until I downloaded Chrome Canary and started using it in place of the regular Chrome. Maybe that info will be helpful if you are still having any computer issues with Chrome.

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    1. Thank you for the pointer, John! Fortunately Chrome is working for me again, but should I have more problems I'll remember to check out Chrome Canary.

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