Finding Courage

Has there ever been a time in your life when you had to find courage? It’s certainly not unusual to have to fortify yourself when facing a struggle, whether it’s something you’ve never experienced or something unexpected. Most of us do the best we can under the circumstances. Later we may begin to examine our experience and critique how we did. That’s when the doubts set in.

*Maybe I should have handled this differently

*Maybe I shouldn’t have attempted this

*Maybe I should have sought help

*Maybe I’m just not qualified

We could all add to my list, but truth is, we don’t need to define how we did, especially if we always strive to do our best. It takes courage to try something new, or even to keep trying to do something we don’t do well. The point is to do what God calls us to do.

Most of the time we don’t always know what we’re supposed to do or when until God gives us the signal. Then we can choose to accept a new challenge or forget about it. The worst option is not to even try. Our Lord can be trusted to faithfully guide us in the path He has chosen for us to live. He will equip us with what we need when we need it. We don’t have to worry about the “how to” when we trust Him for direction as we go along.

One of my favorite passages of Scripture is found in the Psalms. It has given me courage and hope in difficult situations. It has girded me up for a challenge and comforted me when I struggle. Maybe it will be a help for you too.

Psalm 91

“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most high shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress:  my God; in him will I trust. Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence. He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust:  his truth shall be thy shield and buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday. A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee. Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked. Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation; There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone. Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder:  the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet. Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him:  I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. He shall call upon me, and I will answer him:  I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.”

God promises to be with us and will help us in our time of need. Don’t misunderstand…God will not necessarily deliver you from your struggles, but he will help you get through them. You may have troubles and sorrows and certainly you may feel like He doesn’t care. We don’t always see what God is doing, but we can trust that whatever He is doing is for our good. Remember His love for you and His loving care of you.

Linda is an inspirational writer and photographer. Her writing has been published in, Union Gospel Press, Gospel Blog, Frontline, Dollar Stretcher, Discipleship Journal - DJ Plus, At the Center magazine, Simple Joy, Cross & Quill, Hot Cars, and others. Linda's story "Stretched to My Limit" about dealing with dementia was featured in "Stolen Moments" by Elizabeth Bezant. Linda's first non-fiction book was "Homeschooling: The Modern Day One Room Schoolhouse." In it, she shares her experience as a homeschooling mom, explaining the basic principles of homeschooling for the beginner. She successfully completed her first fiction novel through Chris Baty's 2006 National Novel Writing Course (NaNoWriMo). Linda also writes inspirational articles on her Words of Encouragement Blog. Enjoy Linda's photos at Words of Encouragement Designs.

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