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Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Courage is never something we gain easily. It comes at a great cost to the one who gains it because it only comes when an overwhelming fear is faced. And by its very nature, fear urges us to flee when we should stand and fear causes us to doubt when we should hope.
In truth I do not consider myself a courageous person as I look at so many examples of courage. I am always impacted by Medal of Honor ceremonies and the stories of great heroes both past and present. I never tire of the heroes of the faith that are written in Old and New Testaments of the Bible as well.
Most of us avoid danger whenever we can, but there are times when it comes to us whether we like it or not. There are also times when we choose to face it to defeat fear’s grasp on us.
In July 2016 our family watched an example as one of our three granddaughters (Sydney) faced the painful surgery necessary to place titanium rods on both sides of her spinal column to correct scoliosis.
We watched as Sydney fought through this trial with tears and prayer. Then she determinedly fought again to regain her strength, endurance, and as much flexibility as possible in the months following that surgery.
She had gone into the surgery with strong faith and yet in the midst of pain she could not have imagined, she was tested to the extent of her endurance to find courage to face the next hour.
Against whatever we face God speaks to us from Joshua.
He knows our weakness and frailty, but He wants us to never lose sight of His power at work within us to be strong and courageous. No matter how dark the hour or how big the challenges, He is with us to help us stand.
Dear Lord, thank you that I do not need to be dependent on my own faltering strength when various trials come. YOU are my strength and my life, my source to stave off the fear and terror that may grip me.
Thank you for your power at work within me and for modeling that in the life of our young teen granddaughter.
Thank you for never leaving or forsaking us.