by Jean Hershey
"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9
I’ve always loved the word courageous. It means, “not deterred by danger or pain; brave.” When you hear someone say, Be Courageous! It sounds simple, yes. But its not so easy really, is it.
By definition, courageous people believe in themselves. They know who they are and what they stand for. They have strong values, recognize their personal capabilities, and are confident in meeting the challenges that lie before them. Courageous people are passionate and purposeful.
The Bible teaches that we are to take courage from the fact that He never leaves us or forsakes us. ... Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” With God, you can face your fear. You are not alone.
I will say here that being courageous doesn’t mean that you won’t be afraid. That is not always realistic. Instead, being courageous means to press through the fear when you feel afraid. In fact, sometimes your knees will shake or your anxiety will rise. Your mind may even start racing away with all kinds of “what if” thoughts.
About the time this happens, that’s when you have to kick into overdrive and let the Word of God take over. That’s when you have to plunge through your fear and trust in Him. You have to trust God beyond your fears.
God laid out a plan if you read a little bit before verse 9 in Joshua, "Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it."
I know it is not an easy thing to be brave and courageous as we face all kinds of fears in life. I have been there too many times and know that this can be tough. Personally, when things have looked dark, scary, or intimidating in my life, I’ve had to trust God beyond my fears. And it hasn’t been easy. However, that’s when the Lord would remind me, “Be strong and courageous, I am with you.” And I would have to repeat those words over and over again, and then walk in His strength and courage.
We, as Christians, know the plan, we have the tools! We are armed with the Word and God’s promise that he is with us, always. He even sent Jesus to seal the deal. We know the ending too, we win! So Be Courageous! Always!
Lord, help me to always remember that you walk with me every step of the way. I never have to face any fear alone, you are always there. Your Word strengthens me. With that faith help me to be courageous and live without fear. Amen,