How would you like to be bold in your interactions with others? Having no fear of the consequences for my boldness. Being able to tell someone what you really think without the fear of losing a friendship or your place in life. Some reading this jlog (jim’s log) would say, “No problem, I have boldness.” Those in this category would have a tendency to stop reading and say this blog is not for me. But wait a minute. Are there other traits that you would like to have but don’t experience those traits on a consistent basis. Do you manifest unwavering patience in every situation you meet with others? Are you there when you say you are going to be and manifest the trait of dependability in all situations? When someone criticizes you or puts you down or doesn’t meet up to your expectations, do you continue to demonstrate an unconditional love for them? When circumstances of people around you get you in a conundrum to you consistently respond with kindness. If you find yourself lacking in any of these areas read on.
This jlog is rooted in the story of Peter, the intimate disciple of Jesus. Peter was a fisherman before Jesus called him to follow Him and was with Him for three years. You would think after seeing dead men and women rise from the dead, people healed of diseases, blind receiving their sight, lame being able to walk again, and being able to walk on water yourself that you would have had a transformation in your own personal life. Over a three-year period, great boldness would accompany any and all experiences in your life. I would think that you could do anything including moving mountains at your spoken word. Nothing would be impossible to carry out or do.
Unfortunately none of those experiences in Peter’s life built boldness when it came to answering a simple question, “Were you not one of the disciples with Jesus?” On three different occasions over a short period, Peter answered the same way, “I don’t know Jesus!” When push came to shove, Peter became weak and wouldn’t even tell a servant girl that he knew Jesus. Have you ever been in a situation when you could have spoken up about your relationship about Jesus to someone else and you got weak knees and said nothing. A guilt of silence in those situations comes over your whole body. It may be an innocent encounter, or it could be a significant opportunity to give some truth to someone in need. But you either deny your relationship with Christ, or are silent. Welcome to Peter’s club.
Now here’s the rest of the story. Peter is confronted with the same dilemma of someone asking him about Jesus after Christ died and rose again, but he gives a much different response. He and John were speaking to the people and were seized by the temple guard and thrown in jail. The next day they were brought before the religious leaders of the day and were asked, “By what power or what name did you do this? Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them: “Rulers and elders of the people! If we are being called to account today for an act of kindness shown to a man who was lame and are being asked how he was healed. . .It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed.” (Acts 4:7-10)
Before Christ was crucified, Peter denied Christ three times to people who had no power to do anything to Peter. After Christ died and rose again, Peter had all boldness to speak out to the leaders who did have the power to put him in prison. The change. It says that Peter was filled with the Holy Spirit. in Peter’s own power, he thought he could be strong enough not to deny Christ, but when push came to shove, he failed and denied Him three times. It’s like Paul in Romans 7:15 saying that, “the good that I wish, I do not do but do the very thing that I hate.” Peter filled with the Holy Spirit became bold when he needed to be bold.
The Holy Spirit indwelling and filling Peter caused the transformation of godly qualities to become manifest for Peter. On this journey, plugging into the right power source is crucial for relational transformation for us.