Monday, February 18, 2013


the quality of mind or spirit that enables a person to face difficulty, danger, pain, etc., without fear; bravery.
Obsolete . the heart as the source of emotion.
have the courage of one's convictions, to act in accordance with one's beliefs, especially in spite of criticism.
1250–1300; Middle English corage  < Old French,  equivalent to cuer  heart (< Latin cor;  see heart) + -age -age

1. fearlessness, dauntlessness, intrepidity, pluck, spirit. Courage, bravery, valor, bravado refer to qualities of spirit and conduct. Courage permits one to face extreme dangers and difficulties without fear: to take  
(or lose )  courage. Bravery implies true courage with daring and an intrepid boldness: bravery in a battle. Valor implies heroic courage: valor in fighting for the right. Bravado is now usually a boastful and ostentatious pretense of courage or bravery: empty bravado.
How do you define courage?  Is it something that rises inside your spirit when certain situations present themselves?  Is it something you put on everyday like clothing?  
This topic popped into my head when I began thinking about experiences my children would have and how they could understand things like I do.  I then realized that that was stupid because I never want them to be neglected, abused, or invisible in their position as my child.  In fact, they probably won't be able to relate to any of my childhood.  They will have two parents and a semi-stable household with loving grandparents and extended family.  
When I think about courage all I can think of is pressing forward.  Not toward anything in particular just moving forward in general.   It takes a lot to get up out of the mud, to pick up that lunch tray you dropped in the middle of a crowded cafeteria, to be genuine to yourself and to your beliefs.  Lastly, it takes a lot of deep thought to steer yourself away from jealousy when it arises.  Sure, their life does not look like mine but I have no idea what struggles they went through to get where they are now.  
I think we focus too much on the aspects of a person that we can see in the present rather than learning about the journey that got them there.  In my efforts to focus on community during lent this year and in general in all my positions of leadership, I am going to make an effort to hear the journey of each person I encounter.  To experience and share with them in their recounts of courage, bravery, valor and fearlessness.  From speaking in front of a small crowd, without panic, to climbing Everest, I want to hear it all!
In every community, there is work to be done. In every nation, there are wounds to heal.
In every heart, there is the power to do it.
Marianne Williamson
My one little word this year is "Savor".  I picked it as a focus word and a challenge.  So far this year, we have traveled to Koln, Dublin, and London.  They were great but around mid-January, the Lord put the word community on my heart and in my thoughts.    After talking with some friends about community, my friend, Heavenly, pointed out that the most important part of community is unity.  I think my journey begins with the focus off of self and on to others.  It sounds like it would be easy doesn't it ... but being someone that wants recognition and praise make selfless service and humility tough.  Please say a prayer for me.  This is going to be an interesting year!

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