Be You Bravely.
Yesterday I had the privilege of sharing a little about what God has been teaching me this year at our MOPs group.
The main point is: God is sovereign and in control, no matter what happens.
How I thought I was going to be the bravest this year!
So the topic this year was “Be You Bravely” and when Kristin asked me to share about what God has taught me this year through MOPs and just His leading, I truly didn’t know what I would share. I thought my biggest opportunity to be brave this year was going to come from asking my boss if I could just work part-time. Little did I know this year would be one full of transitions. I have felt anything but brave on multiple occasions.
I realized I’m not brave by myself/ Lots of life transitions
All these different occasions led me more to my knees in prayer and humility than a “climb the mountain, conquering type of feeling” if you know what I mean. I realized that I am just not brave by myself, especially if life gets hard… but that’s okay.
It’s okay if you haven’t been brave this year either – and I hope you feel encouraged and not saddened at the end of this little talk.
The idea of being brave requires that you can summon up courage during some sort of decision or life event. I am more of a dependent woman than I ever have been in my life.
So at the end of this, if you can relate to me and you haven’t felt very brave this year, that’s okay. You don’t have to be by yourself. If you have felt brave this year, good! I am so glad for you. I hope you have thanked God for the grace to do so and realize that every good gift is from Him and that we shouldn’t boast in anything but what He has done for us. No matter what your situation, I hope you feel encouraged to lean into Him after this little talk, no matter what your story.
I could tell you a lot of stories about all the transitions that have gone on in my family’s lives this past year but the most impactful for me to realize my dependence on God was my daughter’s birth.
Because I have to keep this talk under 15 minutes, the short version is, she wasn’t breathing when she came out. For seven minutes we heard nurses and doctors administer CPR, give her epinephrine, and then hook her up to tubes to help her breathe. I say we heard because we couldn’t see anything through the whirlwind that was the delivery room. I just kept asking “why isn’t she breathing, why isn’t she crying, and looking at my husband with fear in my eyes. I don’t remember actually asking him questions but the look in my eyes said it all – what if she doesn’t make it?
He knows me and he could read straight through my eyes and asked me ever so sweetly and calmly:
“Whose baby is she?”, “Who made her?”, “Who loves her more than we do?” I love that man.
When they got her stable and wheeled her away, Micah crawled in bed with me and we lost it. We almost lost her. But we didn’t. What if we had though? I know some of you have lost loved ones. We didn’t know if something was “wrong with her” from going that long without breathing and started to wonder what our road with her would look like.
I decided to ask Micah to turn on hymns because I just wanted to listen to truth. I couldn’t really talk and just wanted to be saturated with His word.
Because of this and a lot of other things this year… I became anxious and fearful. Two sins I’ve never struggled with before. It caused me to search my heart and mind to decide things… He is either good or He isn’t. I can trust Him or I cant. Not only in outcomes but through processes too, for it’s often there where we grow the most, through the process of pruning. Our sanctification. My anxiety and fear are being pushed away, (although not completely), as I learn and remind myself of His truths.
The Importance of Community
I remind myself of his truths by being in a gospel teaching and practicing church, by saturating myself with the word of God, by surrounding myself with believers to be encouraged, and non-believers to pray for and share truth with, it comes from prayer, it comes from a godly husband, it comes from me remembering every good gift is from Him and not mine to keep. It comes most of all not by me being more courageous but more dependent on the grace He lavishes out on me.
Community is so important yall – did you know that in the NT Paul is mostly writing to churches? When our old pastor shared that with Micah, it was a game changer for us. Who is the one another often mentioned in the NT? It’s us, its each other, it’s not just you or I. We are to encourage one another, serve one another, rebuke one another, bear with each other, pray for each other, etc.
God is Sovereign and in control. He is good.
It’s true stuff is going to happen. We live in a fallen world where there is death and sickness and we are a far cry from Eden. Even when stuff seems terrible or on the contrary when we are in a season of light with hardly any darkness… we need to be trusting in God’s plan and His sovereignty, His purpose and abilities to make all things work together for good for those who love Him.
He is so good. If he didn’t let Verity live, He would still be good. I would just be a really brokenhearted mama.
We need courage to persevere in our faith, to run the race set before us.
In the old testament, we see time and time again where God calls people to do some really crazy things. To trust Him when things seem downright crazy. I was reading about Joshua entering Jerico, God says “be strong and courageous, the Lord your God goes before you”. He goes before us yall. He knows the number of hairs on our head and nothings surprises Him.
So “Be You Bravely” ladies, for sure. Practice courage everywhere you can. Just don’t think you have to go at it alone.
Be brave in your decisions, your parenting, your finances, your marriage, but all those things are circumstantial – pray that come what may, we can be courageous in our faith. That it wouldn’t yield to anything or anyone.
Let’s have our prayer be that Christ would be made known through our lives, and that we would be brave in making sure that happens, no matter what our story.
I just want to end with lyrics from one of my favorite hymns…
“From life’s first cry (or lack thereof…), to final breath, Jesus commands our destiny”