Sunday Musings

100 Days To Brave

“Courage is doing things even when you’re scared”. -Annie F. Downs

This summer is going to be hard and scary but oh so holy as I try to return to hospital nursing, speak in front of people and tackle two new countries. I don’t know what God has planned, but I do know it will be amazing as I strive to be brave in expectation. I just have to take it one step at a time.

I decided to go on this journey of 100 days to brave. I am 14 days into it, and I’ve already learned so much about myself.

  1. My bravery inspires others. “Because when we are brave enough to share the God stories in our lives, it changes the people around us. It changes us to share them.” It’s therapeutic for me to process what God’s doing in my life as so much is happening right now, so I end up posting about it. Then I find out from other people it’s been encouraging to them also. It’s like a ripple effect. Bravery and perseverance in one person’s life inspires it in another person’s and on and on. Seeing other people be brave inspires bravery in others.
  2. I’m braver than I know. I look back on the things people point out that they view as me being brave, and I pause. Those were moments that I didn’t consider myself brave at all. I was just surviving, but to others looking in, I was doing the next right thing, saying the next brave yes. To others, I was brave even if I didn’t feel brave. It’s been hard, frustrating, painful, tearful, and lonely, but God has shown me when I look back, how he has orchestrated my brave decisions into a story that he is continually unfolding as I say the next brave yes.
  3. We need to call out the brave in each other. I think there is something special about putting brave decisions on display. Seeing brave acts inspires bravery in yourself and others. It may just be a post it note that reminds you of a time that you made a challenging decision, or a word that reminds you of a situation where you were brave. Maybe you share your story, and it reminds someone else of their story. They realize they were braver than they even knew. I think we need to celebrate the brave in each other because we can tack a pleasant emotion to a sometimes hard and scary thing. When you see brave, say so.
  4. I need to speak truth over myself. I’ve been notorious for speaking bad about myself. I’ve told myself “I’m not pretty enough.” “I’m not good enough.” “My mistakes define me—I mess up.” Those are lies…the God of the Universe, the One who is breathing life into my lungs, is full of love for me. When I choose to believe that and live into that, my insecurities are quieter, and my worries are lighter because I know and believe how God feels about me. It’s sometimes a daily choice—a moment by moment choice—to choose to believe what God says about me. I am loved. I am brave. Speak kindly to yourself because you’re doing the best you can.
  5. I need to love what I love and not be ashamed. When I first moved back to the States, I was about two years behind everyone else in what they liked. I had just discovered American girl dolls, but my peers had been through that phase and were onto makeup and boys. I always felt like I needed to do the “cool” thing rather than do the thing I loved. I needed everyone else’s approval because without it, I was this uncool weird kid from Africa who didn’t know anything about anything. It’s been a journey. I think, looking back, over the years, I wrestled heavily with this area. At times, I still wrestle with having the confidence to be the person I want to be or love the things I want to love. Annie F. Downs reminds us that bravery is giving yourself permission to do the thing you want to do or like whatever you want to like regardless if anyone else does. You are accepted by God—He’s the only one other than yourself that whose approval matters. I hope you learn to accept yourself as I am learning and striving to accept myself.

5 thoughts on “100 Days To Brave

  1. Wow! Thank you for sharing this post about bravery with everyone. You are infinitely right when you say showing your bravery through your actions or writings (which you keenly noted is therapeutic in its own sense) does have a relevance in the lives of others, and in my humble opinion (everything I say unless noted is my own view) the unseen/unknown impact they leave with others weighs in large. Yes God is our puppet master, and He pulls the strings that make up our lives. Mistakes define define every human.You said that you’ve been notorious for speaking bad about yourself, and that is precisely why you are successful. Being self depreciating in a modest level only entices improvement. If you routinely tell yourself that you aren’t good enough you will innately try to make alterations to improve. Everyone of us has plenty of room for improvements as none of us s perfect. I laughed out loud when you told of how you tell yourself, “I’m not pretty enough.” Sara, you are probably the most beautiful friend I have! Beauty is 99% composed of not how physically pretty anyone is (you have nothing to worry about in that aspect anyways) but of how you think and act. Out of all my friends, perhaps I don’t have very many (please don’t laugh at me in that regard 🙂 ) you have the greatest understanding of His good works and your ability to smile at His agenda is admirable. Annie. F. Downs sounds like a very interesting person.

    Liked by 1 person

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