“Courageous.” That was the word that came to me as I laid on my yoga mat, surrounded by my coworkers. Half of our monthly meeting was dedicated to self-care and time with Jesus, initiated by group yoga. Our instructor had told us to breathe in deeply and exhale out one word, one prayer, over and over again. Something that was resonating with us, something Jesus was whispering to our hearts, and to let it sink in.
The word was unexpected. I had originally planned to repeat my go-to one-word prayer: Jesus. But He had other plans for me. “Courageous” floated to the surface of my mind. It caught me off guard because if there was one way I was for sure not feeling, it was courageous. In the weeks prior I had felt discouraged, weak, and lacking.
These feelings had penetrated deep into my identity; I started doubting things that I knew to be true about myself. I was doubting my ability to do my job well. I was doubting my ability to show up for the residents and staff that relied on me to be steady, emotionally stable, and able to handle any crisis that might come our way. I walked into work already shrinking back from the shift ahead, anticipating the blows instead of standing tall against them.
Yet God saw my heart and spoke truth to me. I wasn’t fully living up to who God made me to be: I was dwelling in a place of fear and self-doubt. I couldn’t see past my fears and insecurities to appreciate the gifts I was given by the Creator Himself. God saw me in that and spoke to me. The word “courageous” brought me to the verse in Joshua: “Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go!” Joshua 1:9.
To have courage does not mean I have all the answers or that things get easier. To truly have that full strength and courage, I have to take heart in the fact that my God is with me always. He does not abandon me when the fight gets tough, He strengthens me so I can continue on by His side. I could walk into a shift feeling defeated, or I could know that the night was in the hands of my Creator. To have courage is to put my faith in God and trust that He is sovereign. It is to know that He goes before me and the battle I fight each day is already won in His name.
Where in your life are you feeling weak? How can you step into the courage that God has given you today?
2 Timothy 1:7 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and discipline.”