living braver

one faith step at a time…

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October 2, 2014 Define Brave

Living Courage (6)   This lovely lily is included again today because it speaks courageous – just as this lily sprang strong and tall among all the lily pads surrounding it, so too with God’s courage we can ‘stand tall’ in all that is surrounding us…

Today’s question: What is your definition of brave? of fearless? In order to be more of something or to feel something you must know what it is. Is it: 1. not always doubting yourself, 2. being able to face conflict, 3. confidence to speak in public – maybe it’s none of these, or maybe it’s all. To reach the place of Fear…Less first decide what it looks like for you.

It might help to think of people you know, people from history, people you admire that you consider courageous. What characteristics do they exhibit making you think of them as brave?

Wouldn’t you be surprised to find out they, like you, have their own doubts or insecurities or anxious moments? Remember, although we are created in the image of an awesome and mighty God, we are frail humans subject to what sin has wreaked throughout time. We can try to pull up our bootstraps as the saying goes, we can try to imitate others, we can read this blog or books on the subject – but until we recognize, call on, and accept nothing less than the true source of courage, we will continue to step in fear and not step in bravery.

I’m reminded Jesus told us to “Consider the lilies, how they grow…” (Luke 12:27 ESV) Are you not much more valuable, stronger, equipped, and loved than even the beautiful things of creation?


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October 1, 2014 Define Fear

Living Courage (6)     Chances are if you are joining me on this journey, you’ve identified that fear is sometimes (ok often) your friend…

It comes in many forms, sometimes obvious and sometimes vague. Fear may look like: my child is making bad choices and I can’t do anything about it, my husband lost his job and the money is running out, my parent has the big c word (cancer). Those are easy to identify.

Then there’s the other kind: you have to meet new people and you wish you could do something else, you’ve been asked to volunteer for something but feel  ill-equipped, you have a great opportunity but aren’t sure you’ll succeed. Sometimes it’s just change – and change can be scary.

So on day one let’s do first things first: what triggers your fear feelings? Stop long enough to breathe and look out the window and say to yourself “What is it?” No quick answer may come and maybe today is just the admission: fear keeps me from living courageously. Identifying fear is the first step to taking Living Braver steps.

It wasn’t until earlier this year that I finally put a name to my anxious feelings, my dreads, my insecurities – I finally realized the name was: fear. Then I was able to take steps toward brave and begin to leave fear behind.

So today, sometime, somewhere take those few ‘me’ moments and ask… Allow your vulnerable self to be honest…