Each of us knows a lot. Our behavior might suggest otherwise, however, in reality we know a lot about the people that surround and our inner-self. We have cataloged and analyzed our observations, we have experimented with different types of behavior, and the harsh lessons of reality are not totally lost on our powers of learning. Each of us carries a wealth of knowledge that we often ignore in the quest for something immediate.
Defining courage often happens in times of extreme pain, risk of life, or challenging circumstances. We look at rescue workers and those living lives with joy despite severe handicaps and we label their efforts as “courageous”. I do not want to distract anyone from admiring and respecting the people who are responding to life in this way, however, I would like to suggest something that you and I should consider.
Life is often painful. Depending on our choices, our immediate and eternal lives are at risk. An adversary seems to know exactly what makes life difficult and constructs challenges that seem to overwhelm even the strongest among us. We live in an age and time that calls for each person to be courageous. Easy to say, however, what does this mean?
Courage is being able to look at things in the morning light and see them for what they really are. Courage is taking the hard reality of our own lives and moving forward. Courage is admitting that one cannot solve one's own problems and turning to the source of ultimate strength, God. Courage is. . . Again, easy to say, however, what do the questions mean.
To me, a definition that is easier to understand goes like this. Courage is the ability to admit, “if the way you live isn't consistent with what you believe, then it's wrong.” (Romans 14.23) This courage acknowledges the wrong and seeks a solution and answer. This courage finds energy in personal failure and self-esteem in the solution. I have seen glimpses of this courage in you.
Courage is a decision that we make each morning.