Letter from Jon, July 2021
‘I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe.’
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ
Last week we began a new weekly time of prayer for the men of Liberty Church, giving it the name, ‘BOLD’, from the believers prayer in Acts 4:29-30, where the early church, in the face of threats and persecution, prayed not for protection or deliverance from danger, but instead for boldness to proclaim the word of God, the message of the Good News of Jesus Christ, accompanied by signs and wonders, healings and miracles.
I believe that God is calling his church to ‘boldly go’ (to quote a famous 60’s tv programme) with the hope of the gospel to a world that is crying out for a Saviour. I heard a story last week from someone who had been praying for a particular housing estate in Scotland. As he was praying he saw the face of Jesus looking over the houses of the estate and believed that God was saying to him “I’m already there. I’m just waiting for my body to catch up”.
I love the words of Paul to the church in Ephesus; a prayer that they would know the hope, the riches and the power that he himself had experienced in Christ. I believe that our boldness comes from that same hope, riches and power. For some of us our experience of proclaiming the gospel (or not proclaiming it) is of dutifully speaking out a pre-prepared message to people who are either not interested or not ready to receive it. I believe God is calling us instead to be witnesses of who we know and what we have seen. He is calling us to a fresh experience and understanding of the hope that is ours, the riches we have in Christ and the power that is ours through his Holy Spirit.
At this pivotal point in history I urge each of us (not just the men) to ‘press in’ to Jesus Christ; to renew our hope in the gospel, our understanding of the riches that are ours, and our experience of his mighty power, the same power that raised Christ from the dead. I urge us to begin to pray, like those early disciples, not for protection but instead for boldness to witness to what we have seen and what we know.
Come Holy Spirit, fill us again and prepare us, your body, to join with you in seeing many find hope in our God and Saviour, Jesus Christ.