living braver

one faith step at a time…


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Willing…

joy pixa x     Someone recently said ‘What if we’re only as strong as we are joyful?’

The more I thought about it the more I realized that, despite whatever the circumstances, when I choose joy, I feel stronger. It is in those times I am surrendering my will knowing that God is in perfect control. I may not be happy, but happiness and joy are two different things.

“Courage is not the absence of fear, but the willingness to move forward with God.” Pastor Matt Price Joy strength isn’t dependent on me – no amount of ‘chin up’, ‘push through’, ‘just do it’ can make a difference. But willingness can make the difference – the difference between discouragement and direction, the difference between worry and wisdom, the difference between self and surrender.

railroad me x

But moving forward is where we often get stuck. Stuck in the past or in the now – stuck in our abilities instead of relying on God’s. We go about our days drawing on our strength. Yet we’re told “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (1Corinthians 12:9 NIV)

There’s a song by Lauren Daigle, Trust In You with this chorus:

“When You don’t move the mountains I’m needing You to move
When You don’t part the waters I wish I could walk through
When You don’t give the answers as I cry out to You
I will trust, I will trust, I will trust in You!”

mountain pixa

So we must keep an eternal perspective, because our hope is not in this life – it is in our eternity. While today’s mountains may seem insurmountable or the agitations may cause us to stumble, they are only temporary. It is hard for us finite humans to rest in an infinite God, but to Live Brave we’re only called to take one willing step at a time and to remember: “If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied….But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1Corinthians 15:19 & 57 NIV)

Strength in joy and courage to be willing to move forward with God, hope for today and all our tomorrows…

girl in field pixa x

 

 


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October 30, 2014 B.R.A.V.E.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA     Journey – to start at one point and end at a different point. Twenty-nine days ago we started a journey… beginning with trying to figure out what fear is to us and maybe what triggers it. Trying to figure our what brave is and what we want it to be for us.

We have learned that it is normal to have fear, but not to be paralyzed by it. We will have fearful times, but we have a God who is bigger than any fears we may face. To find peace in the midst of the turmoil does require action on our part: to seek out the One who is in control. We will fail at this fear thing and find ourselves gasping for relief, but we are never alone.

For victory over our doubts and dreads we must be prepared. The preparation lies in knowing the God who knows you. Saturating yourself in His Word and praying only to Him. Knowing Him so well that He is your go to source of comfort. We need to quiet our inner chatter and bring the fear thoughts captive as we choose to believe His authority over all.

Braver living is living in joy when happiness is absent. Even in our pain there is purpose. God can use us to comfort others when we’ve walked the road before them.

B. R. A. V. E. =    Believing

                         Resting

                  in His  Amazing

                             Victories

                              Everyday


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October 9, 2014 V does not stand for Vulnerable

Vulnerable     “Our fear of becoming desperate – of being exposed as that vulnerable, bruised reed – is what hinders us from playing a part in what God wants to do.” Ruth Graham      During those times when our ‘what ifs’ are now reality and fear has us captive we often feel vulnerable. Like any moment we will be swallowed up never to surface again…

My daughter spent many years on swim team, from the time she was eight til she was eighteen. She participated in Junior Olympics year after year. She was a distance swimmer – in one competition this meant swimming your best (i.e.: fastest) for two miles. It wasn’t until the starting bell went off that I understood what she was undertaking. No cramps please, no exhaustion please. During conversation once we were all talking about the worst way to die (very uplifting, right). This girl stunned us all when she said her biggest fear would be drowning. So if an athlete who can race two miles feels vulnerable to drowning, where does that leave us?

Long before the heartbreaks, the dreaded outcomes, the inevitables happen we need to practice braver. It is through practice that we are prepared so that though we may be treading water, we are not sinking. Habits of prayer, of seeking God in His Word, of having others praying for you need to be established. We cannot be courageous on our own – yet we have One who will be our courage…

Because with God V stands for Victory: “…He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1Cor. 15:57NIV)