If I could use one word to describe 2015 thus far, it would be change. My life is completely different today than it was a year ago. God has literally changed every aspect of my life in the past year alone, and ya know what? He’s not even done yet. Exciting, yeah? But it’s also terrifying.
I don’t like to be scared. I hate it actually. Which is probably why I had never ridden a roller coaster in my life until I was eighteen years old. It took me eighteen years, to finally take the chance and ride one. If we ever happen to be riding a roller coaster together some day, I’ll just give ya a heads up: I’m the girl who prays the entire ride and holds on for dear life.
It was terrifying for sure, but it was also exhilarating, intense and, dare I say, wonderful? I love roller coasters now, but if I hadn’t taken the chance just one time, I never would have discovered this.
This new year is full of opportunities to do the things that scare me to death and to be totally honest, I don’t know how I feel about that at all. But I do know one thing, God’s got this.
I want to be brave, more than anything. I want to be able to make the hard decisions, to stare fear in the face and take the next step regardless. Kind of crazy for a twenty-four year old who still has a massive fear of thunderstorms and has to have her almost twenty year old Simba stuffed animal to comfort her, right?
As I write today, I’m sitting by my great-grandmother’s bedside in a little nursing home cradled away in Pataskala, Ohio. One of the greatest influences she has had on my life is her strength. Strength to love, strength to survive, strength to live. And now at the end of her days, she is surrounded by family that now has to be strong enough to let go.
I wish I could sit and listen to the stories of her life over the past ninety-one years. I know one thing though, she can look back over her life and smile because she knows she was brave. And I pray that one day I can look back over my life and say that I was brave as well.
God is changing everything. Situations, opportunities, He’s taken people out of my life, and brought new people in, and I know it’s all for a reason. He’s setting up a much bigger picture than I can see right now. And this all happened when I prayed a simple prayer, “God, let me brave.”
I was hoping beyond all hope that He would just instill bravery in me and I would be able to face the armies of Mordor with nothing more than a bow and a single arrow. (I’ve never shot a bow before in my life, and for those of you who caught my Lord of the Rings reference, you’re awesome) So clearly, that’s brave. But He didn’t. Instead He’s given me countless opportunities everyday to be brave. Whether they are big or small, they still take courage and faith that He knows what He’s doing.
Can you imagine if we all chose to be brave as our first line of defense? My Pastor says that fear and faith have one thing in common: you have to believe in them. I don’t know about you, but I want to believe in faith.
I have a promise in my heart and believing that I will see it fulfilled requires me to be brave. In the midst of hurt and heartbreak, uncertainty, and doubt, I have to be brave to trust that God is working everything out for His good in His timing.
Do me a favor. Take one second to think about situations in your life. Those things that scare you to death, and consider for a moment how different everything would be if you chose to believe in faith instead of that fear?
We have so much more to live for than just surviving everyday and hoping things will just happen to turn around. Let’s be brave. Let’s have faith. And let’s watch God radically change everything for His Glory.