The Business of Being Brave

Woman Peeking thru eyes

Have you ever given a pep talk to one of your kids and walked away with the realization that perhaps the one that needed to hear it the most was YOU?

Flashback four years ago.

I was sitting on my 14 year old daughter’s bed whispering words of encouragement. She was terrified to attend a varsity level track meet as a seventh grader. The temptation to quit was high.

She and I chatted for quite some time about the business of being brave. I told her how much I loved her and that I believed in her. I also told her how excited I was to see her pursue her dreams. I assured her that God had big plans for her and that I was excited to see how His plans for her future would unfold.

Eventually a smile broke through her tears and after a few more hugs it was time to let her be. I slipped out of the room and gently closed the door behind me. ”Help her believe it Lord.” On the heels of my prayer He whispered to me, “I’ll help her believe it, YOU help her to see it.”

Gulp.

Suddenly, I became convicted of two things:

#1 The wish I had for my daughter to take chances, dream big and honor a calling was the very same wish my heavenly father had for me.

#2 The best way for my daughter to be brave in her pursuits was for her to witness courage in her own mother.

Double gulp.

And so that was the beginning. The beginning of my venture to become a risk taker.

Four years ago I stuck my toe in the waters of speaking and writing. This week I’m neck deep in a manuscript and preparing to give a talk in an arena that totally intimidates me.

But I’m doing it anyway. I’m doing it afraid.

Afraid I will fail.
Afraid I will disappoint.
Afraid I will get it wrong.

Afraid I will succeed and it will cost my family.
Afraid I will please others and be tempted to desire that more than God’s pleasure.
Afraid I will get it right and fall into the prideful trap that it was my own doing.

The list could go on. {Trust me.} But I figured out something else about myself. There’s one thing I’m afraid of more than all of the above.

I’m afraid of not trying.

Quotes about courage adorn my filing cabinet. They bolster me on days of doubt.

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts.”
~ Winston Churchill

“God gave me my talent and I was afraid of facing Him one day if I didn’t use it.”
~ Jack Sorenson (Western Artist)

But the greatest support I receive is continued encouragement from my heavenly Father. He reminds me that He’s made me brave:

“For (I) did not give (you) a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love and self-discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7

And that he has plans for me:

“For (you) are God’s masterpiece. He has created (you) anew in Christ Jesus so that (you) can do the good things he planned for (you) long ago.” Ephesians 2:10

Even more marvelous than these insights is a greater truth that He’s revealed——–

It’s not about me.

 

The journey is about HIM.

 

What. A. Relief.

When I’m not sure I can trust the desires of my own heart I know I can trust Him with the desires I lay at His feet.

When opportunity arises and I lack faith in my own abilities I know He is the one that makes me able, and He is always enough.

When the vision begins to morph and the cost to loved ones becomes clearer I can trust that He will use the opportunity to benefit, not harm them.

Bottom line…when I surrender my dreams I’m flooded with relief in the knowledge that it’s all about Him. Fear begrudgingly makes way for the new kid in town. The one that aspires to live higher. The one who believes in a God that’s bigger than her fears. The one that takes to heart the business of being brave.

How about you? Is God nudging you to be brave? If so, in what way? If you could fill in the blanks below what would they look like?

If I weren’t afraid to say, I would___________________________________.

If I weren’t afraid to do, I would____________________________________.

If I weren’t afraid to feel, I would___________________________________.

If I weren’t afraid to risk, I would___________________________________.

Dear friends, there is an answer to every fill-in-the-blank and it’s found in these two words——Jesus Christ.

Will you claim with me the truth that Jesus wants to pour into our lives? Will you do life afraid with me? As we seek to learn more about the business of being brave let’s bolster one another! May we listen to each other’s dreams and remind one another of how He sees us and then let us remember His words to us,

“Be brave, be strong and take heart all you who hope in the Lord.” Psalm 31:24                                                    ********************************************************************************************

Sweet DoAheads, If you’d like an extra boost in the bravery department would hop over to Suzie Eller’s blog with me today? She’s got risk taker’s galore linking up to her website as they share their own stories about being brave. Let’s draw strength from one another and take the journey together!

#takearisk

www.tsuzanneeller.com

Your DoAhead Friend,

Comments

  1. Cindy, I am encouraged today by your story, your quotes and your scripture! Continuing to take risks for Jesus!

  2. Yes! Do it afraid!!!

  3. You are hands down one of my favorite people and bloggers! Love this post, Cindy!

  4. Yes. Do life afraid…with God’s strength and His promises to bolster our courage. Wonderful encouragement, Cindy.

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