Student Mission Story: Elliot
The Importance of Boldness
What does boldness mean to you? Does it mean taking risk? Does it mean pushing limits? Does it mean standing out? Yes, yes and yes. We are commissioned by God to be bold in our faith. “To be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect” 1 Peter 3:15. Boldness in our hope is what moves the gospel and invites others to know Jesus.
This is Elliot's story. Elliot, having moved from Peru to live in the UK for the first time, went to study at Bath University and brought with him the boldness of his hope that he has in Jesus.
"I was like “yeah, why not” because sometimes I like taking risks and just going for it."
“Last December there was a caroling event in Bath city centre, so I decided to go along. Someone was singing a few carols in the middle and people would come and stand around and chat with each other. So, I chatted to one person and it wasn't my most successful chat. I would say that sometimes I just get carried away with intellectual arguments when actually, sometimes you just need to tell people “Oh God loves you and he has a plan for your life, what do you think?””
“Don’t over complicate things and that's what I'm learning. So, actually soon after that there were different people going up to like the middle to the microphone and sharing. Someone asked me if I wanted to go and I was like “yeah, why not” because sometimes I like taking risks and just going for it. So, I went out and just shared the story of the lost sheep. A few seconds before I felt like God putting that story of my mind so I thought well that's it. I think when you are talking to people on the street then you want to engage with a story. So, I just kind of stepped out a bit and shared that. I feel like when I am bold with my faith, even though I don't think I said anything super concrete, God gives it a big yes”
"these moments can have eternal consequences.”
We can step out with boldness and stretch our comfort zones in lots of ways, and a lot of the time it can be scary and you might feel nervous. “The thing I'm most nervous about is usually going up to people. I feel like starting the conversation is definitely the hardest part. I think, at least for me, once I get into the conversation I feel a bit more comfortable.”
“When I think about getting past those initial nerves I just think “well what’s the worst thing that can happen? They say no and I'm personally insulted? Well, that’s not the end of the world.” I also think about the eternal consequences that your conversations with people have. It can be hard to think this way because it is pretty abstract, but if you can somehow make that concrete in your mind then you know that these moments can have eternal consequences.”
"I think it always comes down to building relationships."
“I definitely think it involves creating relationships; I think that is probably the biggest thing. If someone asks a question, that is kind of like your golden opportunity, but obviously that’s not always going to be the case. When you meet with people more frequently then you are building relationships with them in that way and I think it’s important that we make ourselves available to all those people. I think we are doing that in saying “well if you have any questions you can ask me”.