In tough times, persecution can lead spirit-filled believers to speak more boldly, not less. When the persecution got heavy in Jerusalem in the first century, the church prayed for boldness. They also spread out across the region preaching the gospel. When the apostle Paul was imprisoned for preaching the faith, the saints got seriously bold.
I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel, so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to all the rest that my imprisonment is for Christ. And most of the brothers, having become confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.
Not just some Christians had their perspective on life changed by the obvious persecution of Paul, it was most of them. And they didn’t become timid. They didn’t get a little more bold. They actually became much more bold.
That’s fantastic, and that’s the kind of work I expect the holy spirit to do in each of us when we come face to face with persecution. Persecution can bring the world into sharp focus. When things get serious, we’re likely to pay more attention. That’s a good thing! Would to God we were bold without persecution, but if it the wisdom of God ordains that we should advance the gospel through persecution, so be it. I’d rather serve Christ than be comfortable.