I used to think about courage in terms of doing 'big' physical things, like going on the giant swing at a Sport and Recreation camp, climbing out on the yard arm of a tall ship, and jumping off the 10m diving platform (I've never done that!).
But then I heard a sermon about having courage for the 'little', but often life-changing moments, like starting a conversation with someone you don't know, opening a letter that you know you may not like the contents of, and learning how to confidently say how you really feel.
Hearing that sermon, and it was quite a few years ago now, changed the way I approached the 'little' yet 'big' moments in my life. I started to see these moments as opportunities to build courage - essentially building a greater trust in Jesus.
However, these moments/opportunities required more than trust, they required me to actually do something. I could say to myself, I trust You God, and then leave the letter unopened on the table for days. Am I really trusting God? No. It was not until I actually opened that letter that the trust went into action and I became courageous. And wow did that feel good!
In my listening appointment with God this week, one of the things I felt God say to me was, 'have courage to let me do the work I want to do in you.' My immediate response was, 'Need more courage - I need to get more equipped!' . I know that over the years God has increased my courage, but this sounded like I was soon going to have some God-given opportunities to grow that courage to the next level and I didn't want to have fear sabotage the work God wanted to do in me.
Earlier in the week I had set up a playlist called 'Courage' and it included songs like, 'You're gonna be OK' by Jenn Johnson; 'Take Courage' by Bethel Music; 'Your grace finds me' by Matt Redman; 'Lions' by Skillet; 'This I believe' by Hillsong Worship; 'Whom shall I fear' by Passion; 'No Longer Slaves' by Bethel; 'Break every chain' by Jesus Culture and 'Another in the Fire' by Hillsong United; 'Oh Fear (My God is Near)' by Moriah Peters. So I added some more songs to the list and started playing them and declaring their truth
Then I made a list of some scriptures relating to courage ....
Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you. Deuteronomy 31:6 NKJV
The Lord is my revelation-light to guide me along the way; he’s the source of my salvation to defend me every day. I fear no one! I’ll never turn back and run from you, Lord; surround and protect me. Psalm 27:1 TPT
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9 NKJV
Also David told Solomon his son, Be strong and courageous, and do it. Fear not, be not dismayed, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail or forsake you until you have finished all the work for the service of the house of the Lord. 1 Chronicles 28:20
So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.” Romans 8:15 NLT
Remember to say alert and hold firmly to all that you believe. Be mighty and full of courage. Let love and kindness be the motivation behind all that you do. 1 Corinthians 16:13 TPT
We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies. Yes, we live under constant danger of death because we serve Jesus, so that the life of Jesus will be evident in our dying bodies. 2 Corinthians 4:8-11 NLT
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7 NKJV
So now I daily worship and mediate on these truths, declaring that God has indeed not given me a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind, and when the prompting from the Holy Spirit comes, step out trusting that He has gone before me. No fear, in Jesus Name.
Perhaps there is something in your life that requires you to step out and be courageous, and yet you hesitate. I pray that as you read this post and take time to read again the truth from our God, that trust and courage will rise up and you will be able to just do it - in Jesus Name. Trust that God has gone before you.
For God will never give you the spirit of fear, but the Holy Spirit who gives you mighty power, love, and self-control. 1 Timothy 1:7 TPT
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