I remember a preacher who filled in for our Pastor one Sunday for some reason. I was about 15 or so at the time. He was an older gentleman with a big booming voice and a head full of white hair. He was so different from our preacher that I actually listened to what he said. I believe that the person from the Bible he was talking about was Isaac. I remember him commenting on the fact that he was timid or shy or fearful. In my mind I thought of that person as shy or bashful by the way he described him.
Then he said something I will never forget. He said, “Folks, timidity is not of God.” He then preached a sermon on how God calls His people to be bold and to fear not. Those who are fearful are those of little faith who make decisions that reflect their fear instead of reflecting a trust of God through their faith. He said that those who walk in fear and timidity are actually not in obedience to God and are therefore operating from pride. Their fear was the product of their pride as it did all it could do to protect self. However, those who walk in boldness are the truly humble believers because they lay aside self-protection while obeying God for His glory.
I remember hearing that and being dumbfounded. It was exactly the opposite of how we think; at least it was for me. Our natural minds conceive of timid people as the humble and the bold as the proud. However, if a believer is bold in the power of the Holy Spirit they are that way because they see their true position before the Lord by faith then they act accordingly. However, the timid believer is one who is not trusting God, but believes that if they obey Him they are taking a greater risk than they want to take. They are not being humble and obedient, but are being prideful and disobedient. Also, the boldness I am writing about here is boldness by the Spirit-led, not boldness that is presumption. The former is a product of genuine humility while the latter comes from pride. On the other hand, genuine believers are wise if they do fear God. That is good fear, but God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. This fear is the fear of men or the fear of failure or the fear of circumstances all based on self-focus that produces disobedience instead of boldly obeying God as He commands.