Thursday, October 2, 2014

Day 2 {courage found}

Have you been wondering where 
I'm going to scare up some courage?
{don't worry - I know where to find it}




courage
[kur-ij] 
noun
1.the quality of mind or spirit that enables a person to face difficulty, danger, pain, etc., without fear; bravery.

When you look up {courage} in the dictionary, you aren’t going to find my picture there! 

No, not mine! I'm not known for my courage 
- my cookies maybe, but not my courage!


 

I’m actually not at all brave. I like to hide in the kitchen at gatherings or finding a quiet corner. I don’t like to draw attention, and I really don’t enjoy facing the unknown. Meeting new people can be really hard. I struggle {daily} with worry and sometimes lay awake at night pushing back my anxiety with prayer and Scripture. 

Yet for all of my lack of courage, I face hard things every day – just like you do.

Yes, I know you do.

Your trials and challenges may be similar or completely different from my own. Sometimes we are drawn to people who have been through the same deep waters we have. How often do you start to listen to a friend or read a post and suddenly you smile because YES! You’ve been there – not exactly there, but close. Close enough to understand, nod your head and perhaps think, ‘well then, it’s not just me after all!’

For me, most new things take {courage}.

Not the deep kind of courage it takes for a dear mama to carry on as usual as she waits to hear if her energetic daughter is going to have to go up against cancer in a battle for her life … again. Not the lasting, daily kind of courage it takes to choose to care for your ailing father at home after the passing of your mother – stepping in for the woman who has been his caregiver for over 60 years. Not the immense kind of courage it takes to follow God’s call on your life and pack up your babies to go live day to day in the Amazon jungle, sharing the Word with the lost.

No, this is just a little challenge – just me sticking one big toe outside my comfortable boundaries - trying something new - being vulnerable. Opening my life to strangers, however kind they may be. 

No real risk, no great bravery needed. 

But I’m gathering {courage} none the less.



Because I was just thinking 
... maybe you need some {courage} too. 

For little {tiny} changes, BIG {life changing} changes, sorrows too deep to express, fear that stops me in my in my tracks, and losses that threaten to pull me from my moorings.

The source of my {courage} is the same.

1. Knowing WHO God is.

It sounds so simple, but knowing WHO God is, understanding what we can of His person and character through the Word of God provides {courage} to face hard things. 

Like when you're a little girl and you've clambered up to the top of Mickey Mouse Hill with your big sister, but then it just looks soooo FAR to the bottom, so very scary. Fear freezes you in place, much colder than the tell-tale tears freezing on your cheeks.  But your {big strong} Daddy comes along and climbs on the back of that sled with you and enfolds you in his arms and you fly down that hill, cheeks stinging and laughter echoing off the trees. 

Only, our Heavenly Father is SO much more reliable that any earthly Daddy, as great as he might be. He is Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. He is from everlasting to everlasting and His love knows no boundaries. He is known for His incredible patience with His children, and He is quick to defend. He's a promise maker and a promise keeper. His mercies are new every morning. He is holy and righteous altogether. He never fails. 

2. Remembering HIS faithfulness.

As much as I love God and desire to live by His Word, I fail. I struggle with my sin nature - even though I'm forgiven and I know my salvation is secure, I have daily battles. Some big, some small - all of them tend to make me forget God's faithfulness.

Someday I'd like to do a study of how many times the Psalmist reminded himself  and his listeners to 'forget not' the goodness of God. I think He must have suffered from the same memory problems I've had. I'm pretty sure Moses and Peter were forgetful too, so I'm not alone there. 

Knowing my forgetfulness when knee deep in times of trail, I keep a record. 

I've got a long list of times when I have seen God's faithfulness, both in the real life people of the Bible and in my personal life. When doubts and fears threated to stop me in my tracks, I mentally pull out that list and choose to 'forget not'. 

I choose to remember God's timely provision {over and over}, how He bound up our broken hearts, how He filled our empty arms with blessings, and how He used His people to bless us time and time again. I remember the joy He gave in the midst of such fear, the peace He flooded our hearts with when we faced great loss, and I recall the comfort He gave us as we took yet another burden before Him and laid it at His feet in prayer. 

The {courage} that comes from KNOWING that the same FAITHFUL God who guided our steps in the past is STILL on the throne of heaven is unbeatable. 

Psalm 103:2
 Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:





Joshua 1:9
Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.

Is there something you are gathering courage to face right now? 


P.S. If I give you a hint, do you think you can 
guess what we'll be {gathering} tomorrow? 






2 comments:

  1. Thanks for posting this Heather! You brought tears to my eyes. I so enjoy your blog.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you Lydia - I really appreciate you taking the time to comment. I'm glad my writing touched your heart in some way!

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for taking the time to comment! I so enjoy reading your comments when you kindly share your thoughts!