“Be Strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
Sometimes the bravest person is the one who, despite being full of fear and uncertainty, lays down their life like an open book for others to read and pass around. This sacrificial act makes them absolutely vulnerable, so that on one hand it might inspire someone to follow Jesus and on the other be God’s tool to help another person press on.
Over the years I never gave the meaning of the word “brave” much thought. For so much of my childhood this characteristic seemed to only relate to people who, in my eyes, were destined for greatness. You know the ones… those willing to jump in front of a bullet like superman or who took risks to bring the truth to the forefront like Wonder Woman and, of course, those who joined the armed forces willing to lay down their life for my freedom.
What I find interesting about the word brave is that so often we use the word to avoid certain situations that make us feel uncomfortable. We use this word to explain away the reasons for avoiding even the most basic of things without any further explanation other than labelling ourselves “not brave enough”. I believe that we do this because often we mistake being brave for “having no fear or being mentally strong” but the true definition of brave is to “have or show courage” (Merriam-webster.com).
Courage is achievable and doesn’t require a superhero power. It is purely the “mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty” (Merriam-webster.com). It doesn’t say people with courage have no fear, no awareness of danger and will not find things difficult, but that they have the strength to persevere.
How much easier it is to persevere when you stumble across someone who can say that they totally understand what you are going through. How much easier it is to persevere when you hear the testimony of how that person not only went through the same journey as you but God held them close and they came out the other side with deeper revelations of who our Father Creator is.
Precious friends, I pray that you truly understand what I am about to tell you because I believe every word of what I am about to write. You are this person who God intends to use to further His kingdom, you are important, your story is important and all that God requires from you is to allow Him to use your story to help others persevere and draw near to him.
So today I encourage you to step out in faith, to look for the divine appointments God sends your way and to trust that you have a divine commission. You can be confident in the knowledge that no matter what hesitant steps you take to become vulnerable and share your story, God will not only give you the courage to do so but will use your act of obedience to do great things for His purpose.
MORE VERSES TO EXPLORE:
Luke 1:37; 2 Peter 1:1-20; Proverbs 3:5-6
© 2016 by Tracy Thompson. All rights reserved.
References: Image: http://www.lovethispic.com/image/9772/be-brave-today; Holy Bible: New International Version. (2011). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan