living braver

one faith step at a time…


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Willing…

red leaf pixa x     It must have been an interesting scene… A man in ragged clothes, the smell following around him, the pasty skin and sores. He came and knelt before the King.

He didn’t look like a king but the man knew in his heart and his spirit this One was the real deal. Mustering up all of his courage and ignoring the taunts of ‘unclean, unclean’  and ‘away with you, sinner, unclean’ he boldly approached and knelt.

“A man with leprosy came and knelt before Him and said, ‘Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.’ “ (Matthew 8:2 NIV)

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Jesus didn’t ask questions, nothing about how long have you been like this. He didn’t look on him with disgust or cover His face to block the smell. But what He did was lasting and noticed by all: “Jesus reached out and touched the man. ‘I am willing,’ He said. ‘Be clean!’ Immediately he was cured of his leprosy.” (Matthew 8:3 NIV)

To this man the miracle wasn’t so much the restoration of his health but the look in the eyes he gazed up at. No one had looked him in the eye for a long time, yet the King of Kings not only looked directly at him, He touched him. You can believe that touch was like no other before and none after. That touch didn’t just heal his wounds, it healed his heart and eternity was his as a believer in the Savior.

green leaf x

That is why, my friend, Living Braver is possible. Fear may prevail in those moments that grip our world. But being brave isn’t about what we do, it’s about what He does – every day.

He sees us raise our head towards the sky or fall in our chair exhausted, He looks on us with compassion and says ‘I am willing’ – willing to carry our burdens, lighten our load.

Are we willing? Willing to face what our day brings, the finality of what we were begging wouldn’t happen, the consequences of own waywardness? Willing to lay it at His feet – kneeling and looking into the eyes that only our heart can see. Not asking for the hard thing to go away, unless that’s His will of course, but asking for the bravery to come out on the other side of the hard thing.

“Restore to me the joy of Your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.” (Psalm 51:12 NIV)

yellowleaf pixa x

If you stopped by because you read my devotion today over at Encouragement Café, WELCOME!   So glad you are here!


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Convinced…

daisies-with Bible1     If you’re like me, you want to Live Braver, you want to Live Courage, you want to Fear Less – but about the time you think you’re there, you find yourself lost in the battle all over again…

We can convince ourselves of a lot of things… lawyers are great at convincing a jury… politicians are great at convincing voters… but what about this:

“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39 NIV)

If we would let ourselves be convinced of this wonderful, freeing truth, how would our lives look? Paul, who wrote the verse above, was thoroughly convinced – assured, persuaded, made a believer, won over. But Paul wrote those words from jail. Paul wrote those words after beatings, shipwrecks, illness, and the list goes on…

Bible - well used1

So how can we be convinced? God gave us His Word to immerse ourselves in so that we would be so assured of His amazing grace, His free gift of salvation, His forever love that when those struggles come we would know where to go. Where to go? Straight to the only One who listens, the only One who hears, the only One that will not let anything come between us and His love.

Sure, here I will worry about my children, I will cry with those who suffer tragedy, and agonize with those who are deathly ill. I will at times walk those roads myself. But someday it will fade away. Someday I walk a new road – with no tears, no worries, no fears.

For now, His courage is my strength, His sacrifice my reward, His love my assurance…

“This his how God showed His love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” (1John 4:9-10 NIV)

Join me in walking CONVINCED?

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October 13, 2014 Thought Life…

thoughtlife1     One day a family with two handsome sons moved into Ruth’s neighborhood. She heard that the farmland where the family used to live had dried up and they were starving. Over the years Ruth and her good friend came to know the boys and their family well. When all of them were grown the two young men took Ruth and her friend to be their wives. Not long into their marriages each of the young men became ill and within a short time died, as did their father. The girls had come to dearly love their mother-in-law, knowing she was heartbroken and was talking of moving back to her homeland, they offered to go with her. Although the mother-in-law was able to dissuade one of the girls, she could not convince Ruth to stay. They began the long, dangerous journey…

My mother always said “Into each life a little rain must fall” – but into some lives torrents drench. In our story today, when everything fell apart in Ruth’s life, despite her fears of the unknown and the dangers lying ahead, she committed to be there for another. What enabled her to do that? The simple answer: her thought life. Instead of looking for troubles that were not yet happening,  she focused on being there for someone else.

So it is with us, our thought life can get us into the doldrums of trepidation – if we let it.  Right now I know of a little 6 year old boy diagnosed with Leukemia. Lots of big needles, and painful treatments have already happened and the years ahead are full of the same. But, through the wisdom of his God loving parents, his thought life has been directed outward. He is focusing on how he can raise money for orphans in India. He came up with the idea of getting friends and family to donate a little bit of money for each of the 65 shots he will receive between now and January. (Go to:   http://teamquiverfull.com if you would like to read more about him or donate.)

 “…take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” (2Cor. 10:5 NIV) Live braver in your thought life…